SUNY Broome to offer courses in Oneonta

Julie Lewis | The Daily StarMargaret Sullivan, admission recruiter, Jesse Wells, executive enrollment officer, center, and Dominic Lenzo, campus outreach coordinator, discuss plans in the classroom of the SUNY Broome Connection Center on Main Street in Oneonta on Thursday.

SUNY Broome will begin offering courses from a campus in downtown Oneonta on Monday, Jan. 27.

Classes will take place in a room on the lower level of the building at 254 Main St., SUNY Broome Executive Enrollment Management Officer Jesse Wells said.

Wells said the college in late summer was invited to a discussion by local organizations, including the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce and the Oneonta City School District, to discuss the endeavor.

"They started talking about some of the needs of the community, which were often working adults who need access to short-term credentials," Wells said. "That can mean a lot of things. It could mean anything from just picking up a class or two to earning a certificate."

There will be two classes this spring for the campus connection's "soft opening," Wells said. The goal is to have a more formal launch in the fall with more course offerings, he said.

The two spring semester classes, “Selling Fundamentals” and “Intro to Entrepreneurship,” will both take place at 254 Main St.

"Selling Fundamentals" will be taught by a SUNY Broome professor in person while “Intro to Entrepreneurship,” a hybrid course, will feature a live video connection to a classroom on SUNY Broome’s campus. To learn more about the classes, visit www2.sunybroome.edu/oneonta/.

SUNY Broome also wants to use the room to provide a shared work space one night a week for people in Oneonta taking any SUNY Broome online courses, Wells said. This will be finalized after the first week of classes, he said.

"You can come here, bring your laptop, connect and sit down with other students that are taking online classes," Wells said.

He said having these options lets people choose their own learning style.

"You can take a course fully online and just kind of hang out here with us every once in a while to make sure you’re on the right track," Wells said. "Or you can take a fully live course that's happening right here on site, all contained. Or you can take one of these hybrid courses which is partially online and partially through our distance learning connection, and partially live.”

Wells said the intent was for the remote campus to be integrated into the downtown community, instead of being its own entity.

“We're getting to know the community and the community itself has been incredibly welcoming," Wells said. SUNY Broome has transfer agreements with Hartwick College for music programs and general and cross-divisional transfer, according to https://tinyurl.com/uhuxktg.

Wells said the endeavor is funded entirely by SUNY Broome. The college is renting the space at 254 Main St. from Peter Clark Student Rentals for around $950 to $1,000 per month, he said.

SUNY Broome is interested in learning about the specific needs of local businesses so it can shape future courses around these needs, Wells said. Businesses are encouraged to call SUNY Broome Director of Continuing Education and Workforce Development Janet Hertzog at 607-778-5203 to discuss this, Wells said.

There will be an enrollment support event for spring semester classes Tuesday, Jan. 21 from 2 to 6 p.m. at 254 Main St.

Shweta Karikehalli, staff writer, can be reached at skarikehalli@thedailystar.com or 607-441-7221. Follow her @DS_ShwetaK on Twitter.

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