Tales of the non-traditional
A year later, state branch of online university is thriving
Sloan is one of about 1,300 Hoosiers in 86 counties who have enrolled in the online university since Gov. Mitch Daniels signed an executive order creating the branch. He now will be one of its first graduates.
It's a milestone the university will celebrate from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today on Monument Circle. Chancellor Allison Barber will launch WGU's "Go Further 92" county tour, with the goal of making more people aware of the higher education option.
Sloan is, in many ways, the type of student Daniels had in mind when he made Indiana the first state to have its own WGU branch, with a distinct in-state identity unlike the 19 western states whose governors formed WGU in 1997.
Sloan is 41, with a full-time job and a family. The average age of a WGU student in Indiana is 36 and, Barber said, 70 percent of them work full time. The online university is aimed at nontraditional students who are looking for ways to boost their careers. That's why the school offers bachelor's and master's degrees in only four areas: information technology, business, education and health professions.