Tuesday, February 3, 2015

GRU Launches Cyber, Health Sciences Summer Academies

AUGUSTA, GA (PR) – Georgia Regents University (GRU) will kick off two pilot programs this summer for current sophomore and junior high school students. Both the Health Sciences Summer Academy (HSSA) and the Cyber Sciences Summer Academy (CSSA), a residential educational experience, will be offered in two sessions, June 21-25 and June 28-July 2. Each program’s tuition is $500.

“The vision of the Cyber Sciences and Health Sciences Summer Academies is to offer instruction that is significantly different from the typical high school classroom. The programs will provide students with academics, scientific discovery exercises, top secret cyber defense skills, and social enrichment necessary to become the next generation of critical thinkers, researchers, and leaders,” said Paula Owens, Program Coordinator and Project Leader.

Innovative high technology and hands on learning will be used to provide students with a rigorous academic program while exposing them to multiple health care environments. To learn more about this five-day residential summer program, visit gru.edu/academy/healthsciences.

“From suturing to scientific discovery exercises, students will learn cognitive and hands on skills that will assist them in confirming or identifying a health career pathway for their futures,” said Denise Kornegay, Executive Director, Statewide Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) and Associate Dean of AHEC/MCG.

The CSSA is designed to introduce high school students to the academic and professional world of cybersecurity. Students will learn from experts in the field. There will also be a “top secret” hands-on learning experience for students. To learn more about this program, visit gru.edu/academy/cyberacademy.

“The academy offers extensive hands-on cyberrelated activities that will test and extend Cyber Sciences Summer Academy student problem-solving abilities and critical thinking skills,” said Joanne Sexton, Director for GRU Cyber Security Educational Initiatives and Assistant Professor of Computer and Information Sciences in the Hull College of Business.

The deadline to apply is February 22.

Helms College awards first associate degrees

Helms College, the first post-secondary, Title IV eligible college in the world founded by a Goodwill, reached a significant milestone during commencement exercises at its Macon, Ga., Polly Long Denton School of Hospitality campus by conferring its first associate degrees to new graduates.

The historic ceremony, which included 58 graduates from the culinary program of Helms College (www.helms.edu) and the health sciences and spa services programs of Helms Career Institute (www.helmscareerinstitute.com), took place Jan. 28 at the Anderson Conference Center, one of the experiential learning venues (www.edgarshospitality.com) operated by Goodwill Industries of Middle Georgia and the CSRA. The graduation ceremony took place just two days after 24 Helms College students graduated in ceremonies at the Snelling Center on the Augusta, Ga., campus.

"Awarding these degrees is a monumental step forward for Helms College and the efforts of our exceptional faculty and staff to expand opportunities for middle-skills careers throughout our community," said James K. Stiff, President of Helms College and of Goodwill Industries of Middle Georgia and the CSRA. “Goodwill Founder Dr. Edgar J. Helms’ vision went beyond creating entry-level positions in Goodwill retail operations where important customer service and soft skills are taught to trainees,” Stiff said. “The Edgar Helms vision was about offering a ‘hand up’ that led to a “maximum of abundant living’ and a fuller experience of the American Dream through middle-skills education.” 

On its campuses in Macon and Augusta, Helms College offers culinary and hospitality education in hands-on learning environments at far lower cost than other destination culinary schools. Helms College was founded in Macon in 2007, and expanded to Augusta in 2012.

Helms College was approved in 2013 to confer the Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts by its national accrediting body, the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training, and by the U.S. Department of Education. Approval for the expansion of that degree program to Augusta’s campus is pending, and expected in time for the April class start along with approval for Veterans Administration funding for eligible former members of the armed services. Those programs already are in operation at the Macon campus. 

Under an articulation agreement reached in 2014 with the Art Institute, associate degree students can transfer their Helms College credits to any of the Institute's seven Southeastern campuses to continue to study toward a bachelor's degree.

In addition to expansion of programs at its campuses in Augusta and Macon, Helms College also is working to create an agricultural campus in the Lake Oconee, Ga., area, and to develop a School of Equine Studies in Aiken, S.C.

Branches of nationally accredited programs from Helms College and Helms Career Institute are available for expansion to other Goodwills throughout out the country. 

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