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Wednesday, April 21st, 2010 - 10:38 am

From the Editor

The value of delivering an experience-rich, Purdue degree

It’s no secret that we at Purdue Calumet are pretty proud of our nearly 2-year-old experiential learning program.

Why shouldn’t we be? The program’s approach to integrating traditional and applied learning in a real world, job-related environment is distinctive.

Not only has our program adopted principles of the National Society for Experiential Education (NSEE), but it also has become a graduation requirement for ALL baccalaureate degree-seeking, Purdue Calumet students. We’re aware of no other university or college that has embraced experiential learning in this manner.

‘A high quality education should…’
As Purdue Calumet Chancellor Howard Cohen has said:

“A high quality education should integrate classroom and laboratory learning with learning that takes place in job- and other experience-related settings—the same settings in which we expect our students to work after they graduate…

In a very real and practical sense, experiential learning is creative, improved learning. Arguably, it is a giant step in the evolution of 21st century education.”

Since we introduced experiential learning to our curricula nearly two years ago, the program has become a catalyst for fostering engaged learning—a Purdue Calumet strategic goal.

2,100+ students, 100 courses
More than 2,100 students have enrolled in at least one of the approximately 100 approved experiential learning courses included in the Purdue Calumet catalog. Those courses comply with the aforementioned NSEE principles, including a partnership among students, faculty and participating community collaborators.

This issue of INSIGHT online offers several perspectives relating to experiential learning (ExL). The feature package, Nursing students get REAL, provides insight into the innovative, experience-rich benefits nursing students have derived from research and interaction with local health care leaders and institutions through their ExL senior capstone course.

Connecting the worlds of experience & learning
But the early success returns of our experiential learning investment go beyond nursing students. In this issue’s Next Level feature, you can read about how communication student Monica Jimenez’s efforts to satisfy an ExL class assignment transitioned into a job.

Governor Daniels and The Indiana Commission for Higher Education have made it clear that degree attainment is crucial to Indiana’s future. By connecting the world of experience with the world of learning, Purdue Calumet is well on its way to delivering a Purdue degree that is more valuable than ever.


Wes Lukoshus signature

Wes Lukoshus
Editor &
Asst. Vice Chancellor for Advancement/University Relations