GLEN OAKS TODAY – September, 2015

What is the Value of College?

As you read all the print news reports and listen to all the TV news bites in recent times, it would seem that the value of a college education is not what it used to be. This is not the case according to a recent report from the Pew Research Center. The report states that, “The earnings gap between young adults with and without bachelor’s degrees has been stretched it its widest level in nearly half a century.” This conclusion was based on recent census data. (Paul Tyler, The Rising Cost of Not Going to College, Pew Research Center, February 11, 2014) The report goes on to say, “Young adults with just a high school diploma earned 62 percent of the typical salary of college graduates. That’s down from 81 percent in 1965, the earliest year for which comparable data are available.”

The study reported the increasing difficulties for many adults who lack a bachelor’s degree in finding life — supporting paying jobs. The result is a widening gap between high and low wage work. More often it is the high school graduate only who lives in poverty and works in unsatisfying jobs.

The report goes on to state that, “roughly nine out of ten college graduates ages 25-32 said that their bachelor’s degree had paid off or will pay off if the future. Even among the two-thirds of young adults who borrowed money for college, about 86 percent said their degrees have been, or will be, worth it.”

The Pew report addresses the true current case of just how much college is worth by reporting, “For instance, college graduates ages 25-32 who were working full-time now typically earn about $17,500 more annually than employed young adults with just a high school diploma ($45,500 vs. $28,000). In 1965, before globalization and automation wiped out many middle-class jobs in areas such as manufacturing, the inflation adjusted gap was just $7,449.”

The most interesting and discouraging conclusion from this lengthy research report is the fact that the gap between low and middle/upper-class income is widening and more than ever dependent on one’s educational attainment level. Even in the Midwest where for many decades it was possible to make a solid living wage with only a high school education, it is now the case that entry-level jobs in most manufacturing pay in the $10-$15 per hour range resulting in $20,000 – $30,000 per year. Just one generation back, wages were higher for most of these jobs than the $10-$15 per hour of today. The recession and globalization (loss of jobs overseas) have made the entry-level, high-school only job market close to poverty. Suffice it to say, the future income potential and life success for young adults without a college education is bleak.

This writer does not want to leave the reader feeling bad about the future but rather desire to provide a ray of hope. Glen Oaks Community College is the local opportunity provider that is low-cost, high-quality, and focused on providing the training needed to either enter directly into the workforce at a much higher wage or transfer to a four-year institution successfully. The cost of attending Glen Oaks is less than $4,000 per year for tuition, books and fees. Just a quick review of the Pew report showed how good of an investment this is for one’s life income and satisfaction. Glen Oaks is here in St. Joseph County at the will of the people to serve one and all by adding value to lives and changing futures.

-Dr. David Devier
Glen Oaks Community College President


Diamonds, Donors, and Dollars for Scholars Gala Event

Save the date! Give the gift of learning at our Glen Oaks Community College Foundation Gala Event to be held on the Glen Oaks Community College Concourse on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Hors d’oeuvres and drinks will be served 6pm – 9pm.

Participate in a silent/live auction, enjoy music and an opportunity to win a half carat diamond by Fiebig Jewelers.

$50 per ticket. To reserve tables for party(s) of 6 or more contact Pam Hughes at (269) 294-4384 or via our Contact Form.

Don’t miss the first ever Glen Oaks Community College Foundation Gala Event on Friday, Oct. 2. This event promises to be a very special evening for a very special cause – Scholarships for Students. Enjoy music, a silent/live action and there will be an opportunity to win a half carat diamond by Fiebig Jewelers.

Participants will also be the first to view the new Alumni and Friends Brick Plaza! Click on the above for more detailed information.


Glen Oaks partners with MSU to offer Agribusiness program

Glen Oaks Community College has entered into a partnership with Michigan State University to offer an Associate of Applied Science in Business degree with a concentration in Agricultural Operations (Agribusiness).

The partnership allows students to earn a certificate from the MSU Institute of Agricultural Technology (IAT) while working toward an associate degree from Glen Oaks. The partnership between the two institutions benefits those seeking employment in the agricultural industry. Every credit earned will transfer to MSU for students seeking a four-year degree.

“We have been working with representatives from MSU’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources for quite some time to prepare this program for launch,” said Kevin Conner, Glen Oaks professor of information technology. “The degree prepares students to move directly into the workforce or continue in further studies in agriculture. Students will take courses from both Glen Oaks and Michigan State University’s Institute of Agricultural Technology, and the program will emphasize fundamentals in farm and crop management.”

Students in the program will gain a solid background in plant and soil science, precision agriculture, water management, entomology, plant pathology and business management. Students will also have exposure to exciting opportunities available in the industry.

Early on, Mark Trowbridge, president of the Centreville School Board, was a driving force in pursuing the idea of such a program in the county. His son was involved in the Career Tech Education Agriculture program in Centreville and is currently a student studying agriculture at MSU. “I felt there was a void in our county for students who wanted to pursue careers in agriculture,” said Trowbridge. “As a result of my son attending MSU, I had exposure to the type of off-campus programs that MSU offers in agribusiness and shared these with Glen Oaks administration in an effort to stimulate conversation.”

Glen Oaks saw the interest and formed an advisory committee to help identify the need for types of agricultural careers in the region and continue the process of working on the partnership with MSU.

“We are very excited about what we have put together here, said Dr. Randy Showerman, director of the Institute of Agricultural Technology at MSU. “Many of the courses will be taught by people from the community. We work with our extension educators to identify instructors. Some of the courses will be delivered online.”

All the courses are designed to help students develop a background on how to either run their own agriculture-related business or be a valuable employee in a larger operation.

“This is a tremendous value added for students in this community,” said Showerman. “Many students aren’t able to afford to go off to a four-year school and live away from home. Some students are uncomfortable with the whole idea of going to a big school.”

Join us for…
Business After Hours
Thursday, Sept. 10

The community is invited to join us for Business After Hours on Thursday, Sept. 10 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and learn about some of the new programs as well as Glen Oaks new partnership with Trine University School of Professional Studies. Click on the flyer above for details about this exciting event.


Goshen College partners with Glen Oaks to offer RN to BSN program in Centreville

Registered nurses now have a new avenue to achieve their bachelor’s degree in St. Joseph County, Michigan. Glen Oaks has entered into a partnership with Goshen College, of Goshen, Indiana, to bring its RN to BSN Program to Centreville.

“The demand for the nursing workforce to hold a bachelor’s degree continues to grow,” said Dr. David Devier, president of Glen Oaks Community College. “The community has expressed an interest in this program and we felt that this was the right time to move forward. We made contact with administrators at Goshen College last winter and we are delighted that we were able to pull this together in a fairly short amount of time. Goshen College is highly respected in the community for its nursing programs.”

“The Institute of Medicine is calling for 80 percent of the nursing workforce to hold at least a bachelor’s degree by 2020,” said Dr. James Brenneman, president of Goshen College. “Nursing education has become a national priority and many hospitals now require one to complete his/her BSN in three to five years. We are excited to be able to bring the program to the Glen Oaks campus.”

The Goshen College RN to BSN program is designed for registered nurses with an associate’s degree from an accredited college or university. One can complete a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing degree while working full-time. All books and materials are included in the tuition cost and are brought to the classroom by the instructors. To enroll, one must have an active Indiana or Michigan nursing license. Clinical hours are typically completed at one’s place of employment.

The Goshen College RN to BSN program is fully accredited by Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The format is a cohort model (students move through coursework as a group); students take one class at a time and attend class one night a week from 6 to 10 p.m. year-round. Students complete the 40-credit hour program in 19 months.


Open-Entry programs offered in renovated labs

Students starting the semester in the new open-entry format programs will be learning in the newly renovated labs in the Industrial Technology wing. The programs include Electrical Technologies, Machine Tool and Welding.

The Machine Tool program was recently reinstated with new machines donated from Vicksburg High School and the Electrical Technology lab were recently moved from the E Wing.

The new format provides an alternative to traditional classroom learning and is a convenient and flexible way to gain college credits. Students complete modules depending on their needs and educational goals and work at their own pace.


“Early Beginnings” video features first enrolled student, first Glen Oaks graduate

The video “Early Beginnings” has been shown to many civic organizations in St. Joseph County. It features Daisy Allabach, the first Glen Oaks student to graduate, and Gilbert Edgerton, the first student to enroll at the college. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can view it by clicking on the Glen Oaks YouTube channel on the left of the home page ( and going to the “Early Beginnings” video.


To see the pdf of this publication, Click Here.