Montana State University

Gallatin College Programs to offer four new programs beginning this fall

March 6, 2012 -- From MSU News Service

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Four new programs will be offered this fall through Gallatin College Programs at Montana State University after the Montana Board of Regents approved the program proposals at a meeting earlier this month.

Three programs, leading to an associate degree in arts, an associate degree in science and a certificate of general studies, will provide transfer opportunities for students who complete the programs. A fourth program, offered by Gallatin College Programs in partnership with the MSU Extension Montana Weatherization Training Center, will offer a certificate of applied science in residential building performance, or weatherization. The program will prepare students for jobs in the construction industry with training in energy efficiency and green building practices.

"With these additional programs, Gallatin College Programs will now be providing transfer education opportunities, which is an essential part of our mission as a two-year college," said Bob Hietala, dean of Gallatin College Programs.

According to Hietala, the associate of arts and associate of science degrees, as well as the certificate of general studies, are based on the general education coursework at MSU and in the Montana University System. The associate degrees both require 60 credit hours, while the certificate requires 31 or 32 credits. Classes will be taught in a community location and feature small class sizes. Working adults and new students are encouraged to consider enrolling, Hietala said.

The weatherization program is designed to give students a strong base in building science principles and help them start or further their careers in the energy efficiency industry, according to Mike Vogel, director of the Montana Weatherization Training Center, a part of MSU Extension.

Graduates of the program will be prepared for a variety of jobs, including those in energy auditing, insulation installing and weatherization, Vogel said. The program requires 34 credits, and Gallatin College Programs will teach some of the required courses with other courses taught through approved and accredited Weatherization Training Centers. It will be the first certification program in the country for students at National Weatherization Centers. Vogel said the job outlook for graduates remains strong.

"Research shows that the occupation will grow rapidly in the next several years," Vogel said. "We expect that there will be a large number of job openings."

For more information about any of the programs, or to apply, contact Gallatin College Programs at 994-5536 or visit http://www.montana.edu/gallatincollege. People who are interested in enrolling are also invited to visit Gallatin College Programs in 101 Hamilton Hall on the MSU campus.

Contact: Bob Hietala, (406) 994-5523 or robert.hietala@montana.edu or Mike Vogel, (406) 994-3451 or mvogel@montana.edu