Graduates earn 4,380 degrees, certificates

Taylor McDaniel, Staff Reporter

Picking where to go to college is a decision that can take research, commitment and financial assistance.

So, what would make someone want to attend Oakland University for that next step in their education?

If a student currently attends school at OU, they are one of  approximately 19,000 scholars to have started in the fall semester. Whether a student is one of the 2,717 incoming freshmen, 1,409 transfer students or is continuing another year on campus, OU was chosen for a reason.

Director of Admissions Shane Lewis said OU offers many unparalleled opportunities.

“We have a phenomenal faculty who are experts in their field, who help their students get connected to experiences within a career field that is right around the corner,” he said.

Lewis also mentions an amazing student and residential experience, phenomenal scholarship and aid packages for students, clubs, career shadowing and on-campus jobs.

“[Students] can take the knowledge they’ve gained, the connections they’ve made, and use that to launch their career,” Lewis said. “You just don’t have that everywhere.”

According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Education, 4,380 degrees and certifications were given out to graduating students at OU from the 2017-2018 school year. Almost 23% of those were in the health profession and related fields — making it the most popular program area of that year.

This continues to ring true for incoming students to OU. For first-time in any college (FTIAC) students, or many freshmen, roughly 265 have chosen a nursing major — making it the second most popular major behind business administration. Seventy-four of the new transfer students have also selected the nursing major, while 105 have chosen nursing, but specifically the RN to BSN Completion program.

“We want it to be the most cutting-edge transfer situation in the nation,” said Jason Pennington, director of advising for the School of Nursing. “I say that with no irony.”

Coming in at No. 2 for the 2017-2018 school year was business administration with 806 bachelor’s, graduate and professional certificates earned. Business administration also continues to dominate FTIAC and transfer student majors — 339 and 196, respectively.

The third top major for freshmen was undecided — and that’s OK, according to Lewis.

“That’s the beauty of general education,” Lewis said. “It gives students an opportunity to really get their feet wet in a variety of areas before they kind of nail in what they’re most passionate about, what they want to earn a degree in and eventually what they want their life long career to be.”

The First Year Advising Center (FYAC) is also available for academic advising, helping first-year students determine what their majors or career paths should be and assisting with career assessments if necessary.

Lewis wants students to know that the advising offices at OU are here to guide them with the considerate resources available.

“We are passionate advocates for the transformative nature of higher education,” Lewis said.