Central Washington University is expanding its baccalaureate programs to community college campuses throughout the state. Through the CWU Portal Project, the university’s existing satellite campuses will become doorways to regional education networks that bring university programs to under-served communities in Pierce County and elsewhere around the state.
For more than 30 years, CWU has operated University Centers on community college campuses in Steilacoom and elsewhere.
CWU Associate Provost Tracy Pellett said a significant shift in the need for baccalaureate degrees and in the capacity of educational technology compelled the change in CWU’s long-standing approach to educational outreach.
“Instead of primarily focusing on a specific building on a specific campus, we’ll serve regional needs and use our existing campuses as portals to a broader network of services,” said Pellett, adding that no University Center location or academic program will close as a result of this new initiative. “We’re replacing a site-specific focus with regional outreach that meets the needs of students and employers when and where they occur.”
“Technology can deliver rich content anywhere, any time,” said Pellett. “Students already are living much of their lives in a virtual world and are eager to earn their degrees there, too. While physical locations are still important and will remain an important part of CWU instructional delivery, they’ll also serve as portals to resources like libraries, advising, and scheduling, and for communications with students and regional employers.”