Make Your Mark program reaches out to non-traditional students

Published 12:14 am Sunday, July 20, 2014

David Pemberton remembers the first day he walked into a classroom at Ohio University Southern.

“I was a nervous wreck,” Pemberton said.

It had been more than 20 years since the then 41-year-old had been in school. But he knew if he wanted a better-paying job education was a necessity.

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“I wanted to go to school but I wasn’t sure about it,” he said.

But he went to OUS anyway and talked with advisers who encouraged him to try out the Make Your Mark Program.

The Make Your Mark Program is geared for the non-traditional students wanting to go back to college, but uncertain if they can adapt to that environment. By allowing them to try out a class for minimal cost, they can discover that the college classroom is a place where they can thrive.

A potential student can take one class for $30, saving up to $615 on the tuition of a three-hour class.

“(My adviser) said maybe that would help me get my foot in the door and get my feet wet,” Pemberton said. “You can’t beat it. It was worth taking one class. It was a wonderful thing. I found out I am able to do what I want to do and not waste thousands of dollars in tuition.”

That was a year ago. Now Pemberton is a full-time student at OUS taking 12 semester hours while working full-time.

To get information out about the program OUS is sending its ambassadors to various locations in the Tri-State to explain how Make Your Mark can aid in the college transition.

Students eligible for the program must be taking only one undergraduate class up to five credit hours; take the class at the Ironton or Proctorville campus; must not have taken classes at any higher education institution or high school within the past three years; has not earned a bachelor’s degree; and must complete the Mark Your Mark application at the time of registration. High school students are not eligible until three years after their graduation.

Among the programs offered at OUS are bachelor’s degrees in applied management, nursing, communications, criminal justice, history, social work, early and middle childhood education and health services administration.

Associate degrees may be earned in arts and humanities, science and nursing and associate technology degrees are in accounting technology, business management technology, child development, computer science technology, electronic media, equine studies, health technology, human services technology, law enforcement technology and office technology.

Representatives from OUS will be at the following outreach locations to explain the program on Friday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. In Ohio at BWW in Ironton, Save-A-Lot at Chesapeake, Kroger at Proctorville and Lowes and Walmart at South Point.

In Kentucky they will be at Food Fair in Ashland, Kroger at Russell and KYOVA Mall.

In West Virginia they will be at Food Fair in the west end of Huntington, Hobby Lobby at Barboursville, Kmart on Route 60 E in Huntington, Kroger on Fifth Avenue in Huntington, Kroger at Barboursville on Route 60 East and Walmart at Wayne.