Adult/Non-traditional Learning in Mississippi’s Public Universities
Mississippi’s educational institutions and leaders are aware that the demand for an increasingly skilled and educated workforce is growing.
In the 21st century, a growing share of new job openings will require some college. By 2018, 30 million new and replacement jobs will require some college or above. The percentage of the workforce requiring some college or above grew from 28% in 1973 to 59% in 2007 and is expected to increase to 62% by 2018. The demand for an increasingly skilled and educated workforce is growing steadily; unless we increase output from postsecondary institutions, the demand for college talent will exceed its supply. The College Advantage, Center on Education and the Workforce, Georgetown University.
In Mississippi, 24 percent of adults age 24-64 years old have some college but no degree. 30 percent of working adults hold an Associate’s degree or higher. However, by 2018, 54 percent of Mississippi jobs will require training and education beyond high school. 2011 Census Data.
A Stronger Mississippi through Higher Education, Lumina Foundation policy brief.
Applicants Twenty-One Years of Age or Over
An applicant who is at least twenty-one (21) years old and does not meet the regular freshman admission requirements may apply for admission as a non-degree seeking student. Non‐degree seeking students may enroll in a maximum of twelve (12) semester hours during a regular term, six (6) semester hours during a five‐week summer term, or equivalent hours for alternate terms as determined by the admitting institution. To transition from non‐degree‐seeking to degree‐seeking status, students must satisfactorily complete twelve (12) hours with a “C” or better average in the general education core. Once admitted to a degree program, a maximum of eighteen (18) semester hours credit earned as a non‐degree‐seeking student may be applied toward a baccalaureate degree if approved by the dean of the college or school from which the degree is sought. Section 600 Student Affairs and Admissions, IHL Board of Trustees Policies & Bylaws
If you’re an adult considering returning to college to complete your education or a non-traditional learner attending college for the first time, Mississippi’s institutions of higher education have a variety of options available to you. The primary mission of Mississippi’s adult degree programs is to meet the career and personal educational needs of adult learners while increasing the present-day workforce across the state, region, nation, and world. Potential students may have started, but not completed an undergraduate degree, or have started in one major, but wish to change majors without adding significantly to their time to completion. A number of degree programs are aligned with strategic workforce needs such as healthcare, law enforcement, general business, and others. Adult degree programs are structured to enable students to successfully achieve their educational and career goals while maintaining their commitment to job and family. Many of the degree programs are cohort-based, flexible, or online. The course curriculum has rigor, coherence, and logical progressions aligned with the current and anticipated market demands of the workforce.
If you fit one of these descriptions, Mississippi’s adult degree programs may be for you:
- Non-traditional students who have completed some college, but have not earned a college degree
- Non-traditional students who want to return to school after earning an Associate’s Degree
- Students whose work or family circumstances required relocation before completing a degree at another institution
- Students who changed majors more than once and whose collection of earned credits does not fulfill a traditional degree
- Traditional learners who began a professional program (such as nursing or education) and discovered, after earning considerable credits, the profession is “not for them”
Cost, convenience, and commitment all come together at IHL’s programs for non-traditional and adult learners.