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Dean’s Announcement: Introducing SAS

Greetings:

I want to announce some exciting changes that have occurred this fall in the Division of Extended Academic Programs at the University of the Incarnate Word. 

The School of Online Learning (UIW Online to most of you) has changed its name to the School of Applied Sciences (SAS).  This new name better describes the degrees and instructional delivery methods now offered in the SAS, as well as in the School of Professional Studies (formerly known as ADCaP).  The change in name reflects a change in function that provides a more broad foundation for the future of our division.  In the next few weeks you will see updates to the websites, literature, and university publications that reflect the new names of the two schools within the division.

One significant change is that the SAS will offer more than online instruction.  The scope of programs provided by the SAS now includes courses offered physically on ground.  Why did we change?  The division has evolved and is no longer just an online degree completion program. 

  • In 2004, we began to offer graduate degrees online, which expanded the scope of our student base and faculty.
  • In 2012 we commenced a voluntary education relationship with the Defense Health Agency (DHA) at the Medical Education and Training Campus (METC) on Ft. Sam Houston.  Working directly with the military, we provided degree completion programs for METC students.  And we made these degree programs available to the public. 
  • In 2014 these voluntary programs matured into contractual degree completion programs for the DHA within specific areas of applied health sciences. 
  • In 2015 our DHA program designs became the basis for multiple civilian sector program offerings.  We also were one of three schools in the country to pilot a competency-based education (CBE) online and learning management system, which is Brainstorm® by ellucian®. 
  • In 2016, we began cooperating with the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC).  We developed a network system for use by the Department of Defense (DoD).  These programs will afford many of the same opportunities for civilian sector students and include hands-on laboratory and clinical experiences for students.  This year we were also the first school in the nation to offer ‘for credit’ CBE courses.  We also began to partner with the Independent Colleges and Universities of Texas and others as a founding member of the College Consortium®.

Today we are no longer UIW Online.  Rather, we are the School of Applied Sciences, and we offer online and CBE hybrid programs that can involve hands-on and in-person experiences, simulations, and virtual reality through partnerships and collaborations with military and civilian institutions and agencies in San Antonio and around the world. 

As dean, I know that the leadership, faculty, and staff have all worked diligently to bring a high-quality education to our students.  Please be assured that we will continue to meet the evolving needs of the students with whom we have been blessed with the privilege to serve. 

Sincerely,

Mitchell J. Seal
Dean, School of Applied Sciences

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