SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – Lake Superior State University University’s Board of Trustees voted during its Nov. 9 meeting to approve three new certificate programs. They also received updates on the $13.2M construction of the Center for Freshwater Research and Education (CFRE), and activities leading toward a public-private-partnership to build new residence halls.
The new certificate programs are in E-Marketing, International Business, and Geographical Information Systems (GIS).
The 12 credit-hour GIS certificate includes courses in introduction to GIS/GPS, intermediate GIS, geospatial analysis, and a choice of GIS programming & application, applied geospatial technologies, or remote sensing and spatial statistics.
E-marketing is a nine credit-hour certificate comprised of three courses – digital marketing, social marketing, and mobile marketing – all offered online. The 12 credit-hour International Business Certificate also taps online courses to deliver international economics, international business law, competing in the global marketplace, and either international comparative management or international marketing.
Certificates are roughly half the work required for an academic minor, and are specifically tailored for working adults as well as LSSU students regardless of major. They are a quick way to expand skill sets and marketability.
President Rodney Hanley said that the addition of these certificate programs is part of a larger strategy of adding new programs that target the adult continuing education market in addition to current students.
The Board of Trustees also heard an update on the Center for Freshwater Research and Education, for which ground was broken last July 20.
LSSU and design architects SmithGroupJJR are finalizing site plans and the building’s footprint on property west of Cloverland’s hydroelectric plant. One to three site plans will be presented to the city for review and approval. Continued design development will run through Jan. 1, with a final design settled upon Apr. 1. Bids for construction should go out April 19 and close July 1. Construction is targeted to begin on July 1 with a move-in date of April 1, 2020.
Finally, the Board received an update on plans for a new residence hall to be built by a public (LSSU) and private partnership, dubbed P3.
P3s are one mechanism for building dormitories in today’s competitive college environment. Colleges and universities will often pay for the up-front services through long-term contracts under which private partners operate and maintain new facilities or draw revenue that they generate.
Eleven proposals for legal counsel that will oversee the P3 contract were received. Four have been selected for follow-up. Five proposals for financial advisor were received and two have been selected for interviews. LSSU has met with representatives from development partners responding to a request for proposals. Potential partners toured campus and met with housing staff. The selection of the development partner is scheduled for mid-December.