Champlain College (visited 4/15/14)
Chaplain College has a small campus straddling a main street in town with a nice mixture of new and renovated older buildings. They have what they call “Agile Programs” enabling them to adjust their curriculum and academic offers with the market. They prepare students for a career through three separate avenues:
1) The Major (career based programs). They use an “Upside Down” curriculum providing in-depth classes in the freshman year. This allows students to know early on if they really are interested in this area of study.
2) The Core (Liberal Arts curriculum). This is an interdisciplinary program. One of the first classes is “Concepts of Self” incorporating history, neuroscience, and psychology. They started this program 7 years ago based on employer feedback: they wanted communication, teamwork, etc.
3) The Life Skills Program (such as community service, career management).
This program is working; in 2012, 90% of their graduates were employed, most of which were in career-related jobs, and 40% of them receive promotions within 6 months. This was based on a 95% response rate of the 2012 graduates.
The 2000 undergrads (62% of whom are male) are accepted into one of the four academic divisions. When they apply to the college, they can apply for a specific major or as undeclared within a specific division.
Business School (Management and Innovation, Management of Creative Media)
- Info Technology and Sciences (including an AS in Radiology, and BS degrees in Computer and Digital Forensics, Cybersecurity, and Game Design)
- Communication and Creative Media (including a BFA in Creative Media, and degrees in Broadcasting and Streaming Media, Public Relations, and Professional Writing).
- Education and Human Studies (including a BSW and degrees in Environmental Policy, Organizational Psych, and Legal Studies or Criminal Justice with a specialization in Computer Forensics)
The head of the Cyber Security department talked to us about their program which is ranked as the #1 CS program in the country, graduating about 45 students a year. He’s committed to making sure they the students are up-to-date on current technology, but also have the critical thinking and creative skills to succeed in a field that is rapidly changing. For example, they have an entire class on Mobile Device Forensics. He will bring in all sorts of devices to have them work on, take apart, and learn from.
Applications to Champlain have increased 12% last year, and have doubled in the past three years. Admitted students’ average GPAs are 3.3 with an average of 580 on each SAT section or a 26 on the ACT. During the admission process, students applying to Professional Writing, Game Design, Graphic Design, Digital Film, Creative Media, or Game Art and Design must submit a portfolio.
About 80% of students live on campus; they’re in the process of constructing 3 new dorms (1 is already open; 2 more will open this summer). There is no housing requirement, but most students still choose to live on campus (maybe because it’s cheaper to live on campus than in Burlington). The Old Dorm holds 55 students and is one of the biggest; the smallest dorm holds 17 people. There are 2 rooms on campus that house 5 students which I’ve never heard of before, but these are usually comprised of 2 or 3 connected rooms.