UNION — The spring 2013 semester at the Union County Technology Center will include expanded course offerings, renovated facilities for new opportunities for student learning and other activities and tutorial services offered with the central campus of Spartanburg Community College.
Site Director Kathy Jo Lancaster announced that the spring term will begin Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 and that registration will be held the previous Thursday. She said the entire registration and admissions process will held at the center for residents interested in enrolling for the spring semester.
“We’ll be holding open registration for the spring term on Thursday, January 3 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.,” Lancaster said. “Spartanburg Community College faculty and staff will be on hand to assist students in registering for classes, paying tuition and fees, and purchasing books. This will include our faculty and staff and some faculty and staff from the central campus.”
Lancaster pointed out that the center, which opened in November 2009, has had on site registration since February 2011. She said on site registration is to make the registration process more convenient for Union County residents.
“Students will have the opportunity to complete the entire admissions and registration process in Union County,” Lancaster said. “The idea is to allow Union County students to register here rather than commute. Having the entire admissions and registration process here eliminates the need to drive to Spartanburg. We’re doing this for the convenience of the people of Union County.”
Lancaster said the center has expanded its course offerings and will continue to do so in the spring.
“We are currently able to offer full certificates in welding, mechatronics, production associate technology and emergency medical technician,” Lancaster said. “We also continue to offer entry level courses through our health and human services division preparing students for careers in nursing, respiratory technician, radiology, medical lab, and surgical technician.
“In addition we have partnered with Union County First Steps to offer Introduction to Early Childhood Education as part of the S.C. Early Child Care and Education Credentialing System. This is the first time we are able to offer this opportunity. Our goal is to eventually offer additional courses in the credentialing process.”
Lancaster said the center is also offering more dual credit courses through its partnership with the Union County School District’s Career and Technology Center.
“In the spring term we will offer arc welding , machine tool theory and practice, and long-term care,” Lancaster said. “All those classes will be taught as dual credit. Long-term care and machine tool will be taught at the career center. Welding will be taught here at the technology center.”
The preparations for the spring semester also include renovations and the shifting and/or addition of classroom technologies to provide greater opportunities for education and other student activities.
“We’ve renovated a conference room to serve as a multipurpose room,” Lancaster said. “We plan to put it to several uses including a bookstore, student lounge, meeting room and study room.
“We’re adding a second projector in one of the lecture rooms so we’ll be able to use it as a classroom and meeting area,” she said. “The plasma screen in the lecture room in the back of the building will be moved into the foyer and used as an information board. We’ll be putting a projector and a whiteboard in place of it in the lecture room.
Lancaster added that the technology center also has broadcast capability which enables it to offer remote tutoring.
“We have video conferencing, phone conferencing and broadcast classroom set up,” Lancaster said. “With our telephone conferencing we can do international calls.
“We have also started remote tutoring with the central campus,” she said. “We can offer tutoring from the central campus and from here either through video conferencing or Skype.”
Lancaster said the growth of the courses it offers and the services that enable it to offer a growing number of courses has been a major factor in the growth of enrollment at the technology center.
“In the fall of this year we had 197 students enrolled with many taking more than one course,” Lancaster said. “That was an increase of 116 percent over the previous fall.
“Our dual credit enrollment numbers increased 284 percent with high school students taking classes through the technology center,” she said. “That growth was due to the addition of health care classes.”
Lancaster said that growth in enrollment is expected to continue as the expansion of course offerings continues in the fall semester.
“In the fall of 2013 our plans are to offer an entry level mechatronics course at the Career and Technology Center,” Lancaster said. “It too will be offered as dual credit.”
The Union County Technology Center will reopen at 8 a.m. on Jan. 3. For more information contact the center at 466-1060.
Editor Charles Warner can be reached at 864-427-1234, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.