Universities offer courses to meet the needs, desires of the career-minded and the intellectually cu

There are any number of reasons working professionals consider continuing their educations.  Some find classes fun and intellectually exciting.  Others see them as necessary to preparing for a certain job or career path. Others may want to start or finish a degree.

Many of today’s universities have established centers and curricula in structured “professional-development” environments through which working adults can take courses to help them get ahead at work, satisfy their intellectual curiosity or earn an undergraduate or postgraduate degree.

Professionals looking to change careers can beef up their resumes by taking courses in specific subject areas or by enrolling in a particular degree program.

For those who want to advance in their current career, structured courses in communications or leadership may provide a more constructive learning environment than reading from a self-help book.

Leisure learning can be anything from studying the arts to preparing for your next trip by brushing up on a foreign language.

Many universities in the Washington area offer both degreed and non-degreed professional-development or continuing-education options for  the working adult.

These types of courses are often offered at night or online and usually do not put working adults into a classroom environment with college-aged students. 

Georgetown University’s Center for Professional Development offers a broad range of courses, geared towards academic inquiry and effective management techniques.  Courses are held in their center in Arlington, Virginia.(http://cpd.georgetown.edu)

List of Programs:
Communications and Writing
Financial Planning
Franchise Management
Government and International Affairs
Information Technologies
Museum and Exhibition Design
Negotiation and Dispute Resolution
Paralegal Studies
Project Management
Public Relations
Real Estate

• George Washington University’s College of Professional Studies offers a number of programs throughout the D.C. area and on the internet.  While courses can be taken without the intent of pursuing a degree, the Center appears to be focused on degree- and certificate-based programs for working professionals. (http://cps.gwu.edu)

List of Programs:
Healthcare Corporate Compliance
Landscape Design
Law Firm Management
Molecular Biotechnology
Paralegal Studies
Police Science
Professional Service Firm Leadership
Professional Service Firm Management
Public Leadership

Other offerings from GW’s School of Political Management
Political Management
Legislative Affairs
PAC Management

Howard University’s Continuing Education school offers language courses and focused training/certificate programs for Professionals.  The 148 courses offered this fall can be taken for credit or no credit and are located in Silver Spring, Maryland. (http://www.con-ed.howard.edu)

List of Programs:
Basic Skills
Conflict Management
Early Child Care
English as a Second Language (ESL)
Medical Office Professional Program
Paralegal Certificate Program
Personal Development
Special Languages
University Intensive English

George Mason University’s Office of Continuing Professional Education offers non-credit courses, academic credit programs, and certificate programs.  Classes appear to be geared towards specific skill-set development rather than casual intellectual curiosity.
Non-Credit Programs:
Contracting with the Federal Government
Facility Management
Geographic Information Systems
Health Professionals
Human Resource Management
Information Technology
Law Enforcement
Management and Organizational Development
Process Management
Project Management

American University offers continuing education options without having a specific center or program.  Those who are interested in taking a college course or two (with current college students) can take university classes for a fee without enrolling in a degree program.  Read more at their website: http://www.american.edu/continuinged/ug.html.