The "back to school" message is ringing loud and clear this week for many children.
Some parents are also looking for a smart way to advance their education and a brighter future with additional training for jobs and improving skills.
We are fortunate in San Antonio to have several campuses across town under Alamo Colleges. This is an affordable college system. The cost of tuition to attend Fall 2013 is only $480 for 6 semester hours (for in-district students).
Check the campus map location for the various campuses. On the north side is Northwest Vista College, on the east side is Northeast Lakeview College, then there is San Antonio College near downtown and St. Phillips and Palo Alto on the south side of town. So the driving distance should be convenient for many students.
Each college offers various courses, degrees and certification programs. There are also continuing education classes and ESL (English as a Second Language) offered at many levels and convenient times for adults to fit in around a working schedule.
I posed the following interview questions to the Director of District Public Relations for Alamo Colleges, Mr. Mario Muniz.
1. Are there plans to expand to a new campus location?
" There is no formal plan in place for a new campus. In 2005, the Alamo Colleges Board of Trustees voted to purchase four tracts of land for a potential college. The land is on the west side of Interstate 10 north of Loop 1604 near the Kendall County line."
In regard to the growing population of San Antonio:
"As anyone who lives in the area can attest, the Hill Country has experience tremendous population growth in recent years. Northwest Vista College on N. Ellison Rd. is the nearest campus to this area. It was recently doubled in size as part of the last capital improvement bond and it is already at capacity. Just as local school districts acquire land for future growth, the Alamo Colleges has taken strategic steps to meet the educational needs of the ever expanding population of the region. Any future plan for development of the location will come at the direction of the Alamo Colleges nine-member board of trustees."
2. How is the recent growth and enrollment of students at Alamo Colleges?
"During the recent economic downturn of 2008 and 2009, the Alamo Colleges experienced dramatic growth in enrollment as out of work young people and even older adults who are unable to get jobs headed to college. Now the economy is turning around. College enrollments typically rise and fall with the unemployment rate. Our enrollment has been steady, however, we have found that students are taking less hours per semester."
So look to your future with higher education and the resources of Alamo Colleges.
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