Completing a bachelor’s degree opens the door to promotions, better pay, and smoother career transitions. The emergence of online bachelor’s degree programs makes the process even more accessible, with working adults benefiting from the flexibility an online program offers.
Merrimack College’s Pathways Bachelor Degree Completion program offers the benefits of an online program designed with working adults in mind. Students can complete their bachelor’s degree through online courses that give them more control over watching lectures and focusing on schoolwork.
Online learning attracts more students each year. Federal data shows that almost 15 percent of all college students enrolled in online programs in 2019. More than 36 percent have at least some distance education as part of their degree program.
Benefits of a Bachelor’s Degree
Earning a bachelor’s degree continues to offer practical benefits. For example, the federal government regularly tracks how much people earn at various levels of educational attainment.
As of 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the average earning power of a bachelor’s degree is $1305 per week versus $938 per week for an associate degree and $877 for some college credits with no degree.
A bachelor’s degree also increases the chances for employment. The unemployment rate among bachelor’s degree holders was 5.5 percent in 2020, compared to 7.1 percent for those with an associate degree and 8.3 percent for those with some college credits but no degree.
Leadership Skills in a Complex World
Earning a bachelor’s degree also widens a person’s perspective and deepens their knowledge. For example, Leadership Studies is one of the specializations offered through the Merrimack College’s Pathways Bachelor Degree Completion program.
The Leadership Studies specialization reflects how college courses allow students to delve deeply into specific topics. Debra Michals, Coordinator of the Leadership Studies Specialization, said students in the program learn about leading in times of crisis, team leadership, different leadership styles, organizational behavior, and the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
While leadership is essential, Michals said many take it for granted. “We never think about what makes a good manager or a bad manager until we encounter one,” she said. “In a Leadership Studies program, you get to ask those questions. You get to think about your own personal leadership style as well as the leadership styles you admire and the ones you don’t like so much. It’s a chance to think of big concepts around leadership but also apply them to your own experience and your own career path.”
An in-depth study into various disciplines is what students experience in bachelor’s degree completion programs.
What the Merrimack College Pathways Program Offers
The Merrimack College Pathway Degree Completion Program is designed for busy adults, including those already working full-time jobs. Graduates earn a Bachelor of Arts, Applied Arts and Sciences.
One of the best aspects of the program is that students get to choose a specialization. Working with a Personal Success Coach, students choose courses in their area of interest, along with core courses, electives, and capstone experience courses. The specializations cover a range of interests.
- Child and Family Studies
- Business Studies
- Communication Studies
- Health and Wellness Studies
- Leadership Studies
- Psychological Studies
Other features of the program include:
- Eight-week courses. Each course is 100% online.
- Asynchronous learning. Students can watch lectures and review class materials on their schedule with asynchronous learning. However, they also can view live lectures once a week and meet one-on-one with professors via Zoom calls.
- Easy tuition schedule. Merrimack College offers a three-tier tuition system for those who enroll in the Pathway Degree Completion Program based on the number of credits the student needs to earn to graduate.
- Generous transfer policy. Students can transfer up to 90 credits into the Merrimack College degree completion program.
For those aspiring to a better career with more opportunities and a chance to develop expertise in their chosen specialization, enrolling in the Merrimack College Pathways Bachelor Degree Completion program can become an essential step toward attaining their goals.