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Online Water Studies certificate fills unique need

The popular Innovative and Lifelong Learning program heads into its second year and receives rave reviews from students.

By Laura Witt

December 6, 2018

Water quality classLast January, Metropolitan State University of Denver Innovative and Lifelong Learning partnered with the One World One Water Center to launch a Water Studies online certificate. The noncredit certificate was designed for professionals interested in learning about the history, law and management of water in Colorado and the western U.S.

Leveraging MSU Denver’s name and reputation, I&LL used social media and email marketing to recruit students nationally. With nearly 500 inquiries, more than 30 students enrolled from all over Colorado, as well as Texas, California and Hawaii.

The program is designed to appeal to busy working professionals and offers a self-paced online format. For instance, Amy Blackwell, a newly appointed member of the Castle Rock Water Commission, was looking for ways to expand her water knowledge without spending time in a physical classroom. Blackwell took all four courses and completed the certificate this past summer. She applauded the course content and quality of instruction.

“Professor Elizabeth McVicker, Ph.D., really shines as an instructor,” Blackwell said. “A multitalented individual and diligent public servant in her own right, Dr. McVicker brings game-changing levels of expertise and engagement that are essential for in-person and online learning.”

Claire Lanier, Ph.D., Denver Botanic Gardens associate director and Water Studies online certificate student, raved about her experience in the program.

“I’m loving it,” Lanier said. “The format is great with lessons, and … it is efficient to take the class at your own pace – (which) works well for working people.”

MSU Denver’s Water Studies online certificate is the only water certificate in the country with a special focus on water in Colorado and the American West. Going into the second year of the program, I&LL is excited to see continued interest and growth and is grateful to AARP, Denver Botanic Gardens and the Special Districts Association of Colorado for providing valuable partnerships and visibility within each organization’s respective communities.

For more information, please visit the Water Studies online certificate webpage.