New frontiers for Bellevue College

Picture 9Just over a month ago, the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges approved Bellevue College in providing students with two new Bachelor’s Degree programs. In addition to Bachelor’s Degree programs already offered here – in Interior Design,  Applied Science for Radiation and Imaging and Healthcare Technology and Management – BC will begin offering Bachelor’s in Nursing (BSN) and Information Systems and Technology (IST) starting fall of 2013.

Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce released a study last August; the numbers of jobs that only require a high school diploma decreased by 5.8 million. And furthermore, more than 2.2 million jobs have been created since the start of the recession in 2007, requiring a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree.

With this increase in jobs requiring higher education, comes a vast increase in competition amongst students both in school and out of school looking for employment. But with these additional programs, students and area employers will definitely get a boost over a struggling economy and workforce. “The addition of four-year applied degrees is one way for BC to continue its role in preparing workforce-ready graduates in fields where four-year degrees are necessary for entry or advancement,” said Leslie Heizer Newquist, director of applied baccalaureate programs at BC.

Though BC is accredited for its associate degree program in Nursing, a BSN will boost the program that has been founded and around since the opening of the college itself. It will provide students with associate degrees in nursing further intensive instructions in healthcare; IT; community and public health; and leadership and management functions; it will provide for many of whom would’ve had to undergo the necessary task of transferring to another school for their BSN, helping disperse the amount of competition in the ever-expanding nursing field.

And for those who are more tech-savvy, BC’s unique IST degree will also provide potential students with one of four concentrations: application development, business intelligence, systems administration and information security. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, a vast majority of computer and information technology occupations require at least a Bachelor’s degree–with the median pay of some careers at $46,000. Prospective students at Bellevue College are more than welcome to contact advisors  for more information on specific degrees now offered.

There are very high hopes for BC, and its expansion and influence in all parts of Washington. The college has also partnered with Eastern Washington University, offering Bachelor’s degrees on Bellevue campus and bridging Eastern with Western Washington. What’s more, Bellevue has been working on the development of an east campus, branching out its aid for students into the Issaquah Highlands since 2010. Bellevue College provides the perfect medium for eager students to get their education without the limitations of a technical college but also without the daunting competition from universities.