« Previous Post |
L.A. NOW Home
| Next Post »
Kayla Bortolazzo is about to finish college in just three years, a rare accomplishment that some educators around the country hope to make more common.
A resident of Redding, Calif., Bortolazzo is enrolled in a special program at Southern Oregon University that waives some introductory classes for academically gifted students and gives them first dibs at course registration.
So in the fall, the 20-year-old English education major will head to graduate school and then, she hopes, a teaching career -- with a year's worth of unspent tuition dollars still in her family's pocket.
Bortolazzo said she knows that finishing college in three years won't work for most students and that many are not rushing to graduate into a depressed economy.
But she recommends a fast track "to anybody who is really motivated, feels they have the time to commit to it and really wants to get out in the job market."
Students like Bortolazzo are drawing attention these days as families look to reduce tuition bills and colleges try to stretch limited budgets and classroom space. About a dozen, mostly small, U.S. colleges and universities now offer formal routes to earning a degree in three years instead of the usual four or five. And many others, including the University of California, are studying ways to start such an option.
"It's really indefensible in the current environment for universities not to be exploring more efficient use of their facilities and how to save students time and money," said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), a former U.S. Education Department secretary who is a strong advocate of three-year degrees. Even if they make up a minority of college populations, he said, "some well-prepared students can do their work in three years, and colleges should create a track for them."
Not everyone agrees.
Read Times reporter Larry Gordon's full story here.
The comments to this entry are closed.
I have 4 kids in college at the same time, people like me are big fans of this program. Two of my kids get perfect grades and the other two A-B. They work very hard for those grades and are all very serious. I would not say they are supper smart, just raised to be focused yet they know to balance that out with social activities and dating which we sometimes have to remind them to do and not just study all the time.
One child started going to year around college and will graduate in 3 years. They do not take an extra heavy load like some programs and they were not let off of any fundamentals, they instead just go to school all year long. Some people may think that's too much but he still gets a month off at the end of the year, a week in spring and two weeks in August. I've never had a job with that much time off.
In the working world they are going to work year around with a lot less free time, I see no reason not to start with college, saving the school, me and the student a ton of money at the same time. For far too many kids college is mostly about classes interrupting play time and they leave college thinking the working world is going to be a breeze. It's time the step up and act like adults to go along with the new freedoms and privileges that go with moving out and getting out of high school.
April 23, 2010 at 01:21 PM
Mobile Phone (required)
Sign me up for the following lists: