SAU’s new online grad program for in-demand field

SAU was recently approved to add a new online Masters of Education leadership program in Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education (HALE) by the Arkansas Department of Higher Education Coordinating Board during their meeting at SAU on May 1, 2015.

CoE - SAU approved... Dr Marla StreckerAccording to Dr. Marla Strecker, the HALE Program Director at SAU, the program is designed to help equip professionals to meet the growing needs of retraining and educating an adult population to make Arkansas more competitive with other states. She found, in researching the need for this program, that a recent study ranked Arkansas as second in the nation in its need to increase education completion and attainment of its adult population.

Furthermore, employment forecast for this field is noted to increase by 21-percent by 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

SAU’s online HALE program is enrolling students now for the fall semester. To find out more, contact Strecker at MarlaStrecker@ or (870) 235-5225, or visit

“This online leadership graduate degree will be very versatile in that students will be able to customize their specific tracks depending on career aspirations,” said Strecker. “I am most excited about their capstone projects as these must contribute to their field in a meaningful way.”

She said that the program is for individuals from various fields of education, business, industry, social services and other professional areas who can progress into managerial and leadership roles which demand organizational development, adult education, human resources training and workforce improvement.

The program includes a core set of courses and elective courses as well as project-based learning experiences culminating in a capstone portfolio. With the guidance of the faculty advisor, a student will plan his or her program of study to meet his or her educational needs and professional goals.

Students in the HALE program will enroll in a minimum of 33 credit hours and must meet all requirements of SAU and the SAU School of Graduate Studies.

CoE - SAU approved... Dr Alec TestaDr. Alec Testa, chair of the Department of Counseling and Professional Studies at SAU, is proud of this new program as yet another step forward for his department offering relevant online programs for busy professionals.

“The Department of Counseling and Professional Studies is continuously modifying its programs to be more and more online so that potential graduate students can meet their educational goals while attending to their busy, personal schedules,” said Testa.

To see a complete list of the programs in SAU’s Department of Counseling and Professional Studies, visit

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