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One university has a new college specifically to re-enroll adults who had dropped out

One university has a new college specifically to re-enroll adults who had dropped out
Olivia Sanchez
May 27, 2022
Robin Golden drifted through high school without making much of an effort. After graduating in the spring of 1981, she planned to forgo college and head straight to the job market.
When her father, a professor at Morgan State University in Baltimore, signed her up for classes there that fall, she was furious. She didn’t want to go, and when she dropped out after two years, her GPA was 1.8.
But after decades of feeling underpaid and undervalued in various jobs, Golden realized that maybe her father was right – maybe she needed to earn a college degree.
Starting in 2018, while working full time, Golden began taking classes online – first at a community college in Ohio, then at Morgan State – with a resolve she didn’t have at 18. She earned a 3.8 GPA while getting her associate degree at the community college, and she made the dean’s list at Morgan State.
On Saturday, Golden, 59, graduated from Morgan State with a bachelor’s degree in applied liberal studies with a concentration in sociology – 41 years after she first enrolled there as a freshman.
Morgan State’s applied liberal studies major targets adult students who have taken some college courses but dropped out before finishing. Begun five years ago, it has spurred the development of the College of Interdisciplinary and Continuing Studies, which launched this spring. It will offer many of the same things that helped adult students succeed after time away, but will now operate as an independent sector of the college, open to students from all over the country at in-state tuition prices.
Many programs across the country are targeting the 39 million people who have taken some college classes but never finished. At Morgan State, those returning might have earned an associate degree before entering the workforce; taken some classes before hitting a family, health or financial roadblock; or, like Golden, needed to take time away before they could see the value in college and commit to seeing their degree through.
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