ASU, Arizona Western College unite to address workforce needs of southwest Arizona

By

Firoz Jameel

Arizona State University President Michael Crow joined Arizona Western College President Glenn Mayle in Yuma Tuesday to announce a new partnership between the schools.

Beginning in the spring 2016 semester, the "ASU at Yuma" program will allow students to complete an associate degree from AWC and continue their education to earn an ASU bachelor’s degree, taking all the classes needed at the same location on AWC's campus in Yuma. Students can earn an ASU degree in criminal justice and criminology, organizational leadership or secondary education.

"ASU at Yuma" expands higher education opportunities in Yuma to help address the workforce needs of southwest Arizona. Through the three degree programs offered, students are being prepared for careers in high-demand fields such as law-enforcement and education.

“The ability to have individuals who live and work here to complete their degree here is an awesome opportunity,” Mayle said.

For students like Natalia Durazo, a second-year student at Arizona Western College, the ability to earn a degree close to home is very important.

“I’m concerned with the expenses of leaving Yuma to go to college,” she said. “However, this opportunity gives me a new way to learn and give back to the community.”

Thanks to the new partnership, Durazo can earn her bachelor’s degree in Yuma. She plans to graduate with a degree in secondary education and become a high school English teacher in Yuma.

Enrollment is currently open for students for the spring 2016 semester of "ASU at Yuma," which will offer criminology and criminal justice, as well as organizational leadership programs. The secondary education program will be offered beginning in the fall 2016 semester.