April 29, 2008
Sowa named Cowley's eLearning director
With online classes serving as the fastest growing portion of Cowley
College, the school recently hired Tiffany Sowa as its new eLearning
Sowa’s job duties include planning, implementing, and evaluating the online learning program at the college, and enhancing the learning opportunities for a diverse student population through the delivery of online classes. The major component of the director’s job is to encourage the delivery of quality education through an online format.
“Online classes are the fastest growing segment of the college, so we felt we needed to give special attention to it by creating a division of the college called e-Learning,” Cowley College President Dr. Patrick J. McAtee said. “We need to provide an opportunity for those who feel technology is the best way for them to learn. Still, the overriding issue for the college is how to attract students to the main campus, and provide them with a great learning experience while here.”
Online education is growing in response to the needs of people who may not be in a traditional situation for attending college because of work, family, or other obligations, as well as the "traditional" student who is more versed in the electronic age.
“My hope is that we can create an environment that is rich with possibilities for everyone who is interested in getting an education,” Sowa said. “Dr. McAtee and the vice presidents have an excellent vision of what they would like online education to mean for Cowley, and I am tasked with making that vision a reality.”
Some individuals believe online classes are easier than on-campus classes. However, Sowa said that is not the case.
“Online education is no less challenging than face-to-face classes,” Sowa said. “It takes dedication and hard work just like any other courses, maybe more. The difference is that with online, you are opening the doors for everyone to equip themselves with knowledge to be more successful.”
Sowa would like to see more development of online courses in other departments within the college, and work on improving the accessibility of online services provided by the college. She would also like to develop more online degree opportunities.
“I am tremendously excited about the opportunities that exist with this position,” Sowa said. “The possibilities are limitless. Cowley College is on the edge of having really great success with an online program, and I hope to extend that vision so that when people think of online education, they think of Cowley first.”
Sowa is preparing to move her office to the college’s eLearning Center, which will soon open at 4900 Pawnee, Suite 106 and 108, in Wichita.
Working with Sowa will be, Lisa Craft, the coordinator of learning technology; and Julie Rorabaugh, the director of instructional technology.