Many universities offer distance learning, which allows students to obtain a degree from across the state.
The Collaborative Degree Program is designed for students who choose not to move on campus, like me. Students take classes online through universities such as the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, UW-Colleges Online and in person at area two-year campuses.
Being a distant student has its positives, but some students find it hard to stay connected with people. However, there are simple ways to solve this problem.
Online classes feature discussion boards. Students can post questions or participate in weekly talks to earn attendance points and common questions about course materials are also asked in the discussion area.
During the first week of class, students are often required to introduce themselves. The majority mention where they reside as a way to connect with other students in the area.
From where I live in Appleton, the drive to Stevens Point takes a little over an hour. That’s a pretty manageable drive.
The larger events that take place on campus are a great and fairly simple way to stay connected. UWSP does a great job of featuring upcoming events on its website. After finding the website, it takes two clicks to look at a calendar of events. Admission costs are usually low, if not free, which makes attending recitals, art shows, concerts and plays an easy way to stay involved.
The drive for big hockey or basketball games is easy, too, and some events are available to watch live online. You can watch without leaving the comfort of home. Find the athletics page, scroll down to the banner across the middle of the page and click “live events.” There is an option to watch past events on demand, and streaming audio is available if you prefer to listen to the game while looking at the statistics live.
A more hands-on approach to involvement is what some students crave. All you have to do is email the person in charge of a club or organization and tell them you’d like to join or see if there is anything you can do remotely.
If you want to be more involved, but the idea of trying to figure out how is daunting, take it step-by-step. There are other students in the same boat. Uou just have to branch out.