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  September 13, 2004

Trustees Approve Five New Programs

The Board of Trustees last week approved two new programs in public policy, two in allied health, and an online program in continuing studies.

The public policy programs are certificates in nonprofit management and public financial management. Both will be part of the master of public administration program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and will be based in the newly established Department of Public Policy, housed at the Greater Hartford campus. The department already offers master's degrees in public administration and survey research.

"The proposed graduate certificate program in nonprofit management is a response to the need for practitioners who can lead and manage change in nonprofit management, a growing area of the economy," said Fred Maryanski, interim provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. "The demand resulting from this certificate program is expected to produce a greater utilization of instructional capacity in existing classes."

The program will focus on managing boards of directors; developing and managing volunteers; planning, program development, and evaluation; and financial management, marketing, and acquiring revenue. Although the program will be closely aligned with the master's of public administration, the certificate is also expected to be of interest to professionals working for non-profit organizations.

The graduate certificate in public financial management "is designed to take advantage of student demand, the demand for finance practitioners, and faculty expertise," Maryanski said. Coursework will focus on skills and competencies important for leading the finance function in public and nonprofit organizations, including ethics.

The new major in allied health will be in allied health sciences, and will allow students to move easily from the community college system, where they have earned an associate's degree in allied health, to UConn.

"The program is part of an ongoing initiative between the University and the Connecticut community colleges," Maryanski said. "It builds on the Guaranteed Admissions Program, which already exists for community college students in liberal arts or general studies to enter the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences."

The program will also help address a persistent shortage of allied health personnel in Connecticut, he said.

A second new program within the School of Allied Health is in rehabilitation sciences, diagnostic sciences, and health promotion science. It is designed for students who intend to do post-graduate study in public health, physician assistant, or physical therapy programs.

The online occupational safety and health management program approved by the trustees is part of the master of professional studies program in the College of Continuing Studies. "It has become apparent that the needs of working adult students are best addressed with on-line courses," said Maryanski. "This program is designed so that working adults can complete all degree requirements within two years."

Graduates of the program will be qualified for positions as directors of safety and health. "The need for safety and health professionals trained at the graduate level has become an issue in the past few years as a large portion of trained and experienced safety and health professionals reach retirement," Maryanski said. "The demand for trained and experienced safety and health professionals is extremely critical for companies that have learned through experience that safe production is more cost-effective than attempting to subjugate safety to a basic mandate by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The failure to address safety can have a detrimental effect on a company's bottom line."