With Craven Community College’s (Craven CC) fall semester set to begin in less than a month, the Weekend College program available at the college’s Havelock campus has started registering students who need a flexible learning schedule. This program gives students the opportunity to earn an associate degree in three semesters by going to school online and over the weekends.
“Because of the flexibility, students are on campus one day a week,” said Wally Calabrese, Craven CC dean of the Havelock campus. “This is ideal for the full-time worker, the stay-at-home parent and those with extremely busy schedules Monday through Friday, and many military students enjoy the fast-paced setting.”
Along with offering a structured and streamlined degree path, the weekend program has several advantages compared to a regular four-semester degree program for full-time students. All classes are hybrid (seated combined with online learning) and class sizes are smaller. The average class size during weekdays is 12 students as opposed to eight students during weekend classes. While the majority of the seated class portion is held on the Havelock campus, the New Bern campus offers some as well.
“The advantage of this particular setup is that although a majority of the classwork is online, the student will be with the instructor for class on Saturday to not only go over the discussion or lecture, but also to answer questions,” said Calabrese. “This is critical to student success.”
In addition, the Academic Skills Centers (ASC) on both campuses are available for students throughout the year. The ASC provides academic support to curriculum students enrolled in courses at all levels, helping them reach academic, personal, social and economic potential by supporting their intellectual growth and providing resources such as tutoring and writing labs. The Havelock ASC will resume regular Saturday operating hours from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 18.
“The courses are designed so that the student would take a total of 22 semester hours in the fall, 22 semester hours in the spring, summer is optional and then 14 hours the following fall,” Calabrese said. “That comes to 58 semester hours. The student would then complete an additional two credit hours to meet the minimum of 60 credit hours for an associate degree.”
Although completing 22 hours in one semester may seem difficult, the weekend program makes it attainable. During A-Term (the first eight weeks), students complete three 3-credit hour courses from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. and repeat that process for B-Term (the second eight weeks).
Throughout the entire semester, students take one 4-credit hour course from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., bringing them to 22 credit hours. They would then do the same for the spring semester and complete the remaining 14 credit hours the following summer or fall semester.
As always, financial aid and scholarship options are available for those who qualify. Classes are scheduled to start Aug. 17.
For more information on the weekend program, contact Calabrese at 252-444-0739 or Sylvia King, director of Student Services at 252-444-2120. For information about elementary education, contact Jim Millard, dean of career programs at 252-638-7372.
Story by Holly Desrosier