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ODU/TCC Partnership Launches Hybrid Leadership Degree Program

This fall, Old Dominion University, in partnership with Tidewater Community College, will launch weekend/evening classes aimed at providing an affordable degree completion program.

The senior leadership degree coursework, which is part of the University's Interdisciplinary Studies program, will be hybrid in nature. In addition to online classes, the program will offer at least one course per semester that will be taught in-person on TCC's Norfolk Campus downtown.

The new agreement with ODU allows TCC's General Studies and Social Sciences graduates to complete a Bachelor of Science with a leadership major from ODU.

James M. Shaeffer, dean of Old Dominion's College of Continuing Education, said program advantages will include flexibility, quicker degree completion and greater affordability, as well as in-person access to faculty members.

Old Dominion University offers Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) degree programs for students interested in two or more fields of study that don't easily fit into a traditional college department.

"When we first began our discussions with TCC, the thought was to bring the old Weekend College back to life, but after we surveyed TCC students we found that most preferred classes to be offered during the week, so it is more of a Weekend/Evening College," Shaeffer said.

Cost and convenience are major benefits, said Daniel DeMarte, TCC's executive vice president for academic and student affairs.

"Not only do students save on their degrees by completing their first two years at TCC, but they also have the convenience of taking ODU courses right on our Norfolk Campus," he said.

Shaeffer said the intent of program developers was to create a partnership with TCC and complement their "Z-Degree" — a no-textbook-cost, two-year degree program — with Old Dominion's IDS in Leadership. Enough courses would be made available using open educational resources that a student could finish their last two years and not have to buy a book.

"This program offers a clear path from TCC to ODU degree completion that is as seamless as possible," Shaeffer said. "There are a lot of online programs out there," Shaeffer said. "What differentiates this one is face-to-face access to faculty advising."

For more information, visit Old Dominion University's Interdisciplinary Studies website.

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