Skip to content Skip to Live Chat

OpenPath Newsletter July Edition

Jul 27, 2023

Removing Barriers to Education for All Learners

Welcome to OpenPath. This month, Chris Kline argues why academic authenticity is critical to maintaining the value of a student’s degree, a recent journal article written by Sarah DeMark and others discusses skills-denominated credentials, and Bob Collins and Nate Blachard highlight the importance of supporting students and alumni as federal student loan payments resume.

If you know others who’d welcome insights on these topics, please invite them to subscribe. If you have feedback on this newsletter, feel free to contact us.

Why Academic Authenticity Matters

“Without an explicit, strong connection to academic authenticity, the degree itself loses meaning,” writes Chris Kline, senior manager of academic authenticity at WGU.

Ensuring Student-Centered Value with Skills-Denominated Credentials

"Using a structured theory for understanding skills and micro-credentials creates more transparency into what post-secondary credentials represent, and the value they hold for individuals, employers and education providers,” Sarah DeMark, vice provost workforce intelligence and credential integrity, shared in a recent journal article, along with Kacey Thorne, Tyson Heath and Kristian Young.

Higher Ed: Support Students as Loan Payments Start

“Higher ed leaders have an obligation to educate both students and alumni that payments are resuming and provide resources to assist with the process as roughly 43 million borrowers will need to take action this fall,” argue Bob Collins, vice president of financial aid, and Nate Blanchard, director of financial services.

New WGU Nursing Simulation Lab in Kansas City

Western Governors University announced the opening of a state-of-the-art nursing simulation lab in Kansas City, Missouri, for students aspiring to start their career in nursing with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (Prelicensure) degree. Scheduled to open in late 2023, the lab is a part of WGU’s Michael O. Leavitt School of Health's (LSH) expansion and investment plan to address the nursing shortage in the United States.

WGU Student Story

Aspen De La Cruz 
B.S. Information Technology (2019) 
M.S. Information Technology Management (2021) 
Stafford, Virginia

Aspen De La Cruz served in the U.S. Army for 15 years as an IT specialist but wanted to improve her skills through education. She earned her bachelor's degree in information technology in 2019, while deployed in Iraq, and her master's in IT management in 2021, both from WGU. She credits WGU for her project management knowledge and ability to upgrade infrastructure that indirectly affects critical missions within the U.S. Military. Aspen also keeps busy as a mother of three and volunteers as a recreational soccer coach.  

Recommended Articles

Take a look at other articles from WGU. Our articles feature information on a wide variety of subjects, written with the help of subject matter experts and researchers who are well-versed in their industries. This allows us to provide articles with interesting, relevant, and accurate information.