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New Mexico State University

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NMSU Distance Ed helping displaced students

New Mexico State University has joined more than 200 institutions nationwide in offering students whose studies have been interrupted by Hurricane Katrina an opportunity to continue their education tuition-free through the SloanSemester program.


an Consortium is an international association of colleges and universities committed to quality online education. And more than 1,000 students have already requested courses through the group by signing up at www.SloanSemester.org.

"Most of the students are from institutions based in New Orleans who are hoping to bridge from this difficult time and to return to their home institutions," said Dave Spence, president of the Southern Regional Education Board. "We are also accepting students who are in the National Guard and will miss their regular fall term as a result of being called to active duty in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina."

In collaboration with the Southern Regional Education Board and with a $1.1 million grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the eight-week accelerated semester provides a wide range of courses to serve students at the community college, university and graduate level.

"The courses are mini-semester courses because they are condensed into eight weeks." said Carmen Gonzales, vice provost of Distance Education at NMSU. "The courses will begin in October and will only be offered for the fall semester."

Still, more than 1,000 courses are available through the collaborative, according to Frank Mayadas, program director of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. And all courses carry degree credit. Student registration began Sept. 19 and classes are set to begin Oct. 10. For more information, go to http://www.SloanSemester.org