By Tyler Kirtley - 09/20/06 12:00 AM EDT
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
Government and International Affairs
Museum and Exhibition Design
Negotiation and Dispute Resolution
• 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
Law Firm Management
Professional Service Firm Leadership
Professional Service Firm Management
Other offerings from GW’s School of Political 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:
Early Child Care
English as a Second Language (ESL)
Medical Office Professional Program
Paralegal Certificate Program
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.
Contracting with the Federal Government
Geographic Information Systems
Human Resource Management
Management and Organizational Development
• 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.