Curriculum addressed for new Ardmore branch campus

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ARDMORE, Okla. -- On Tuesday, East Cental University was given the green light to transition Ardmore’s Higher Education Center into a four-year college, but that leaves questions about what will happen with the current curriculum.

Ardmore’s Higher Education Center currently offers classes from area universities like Murray State and Southeastern. Educators say none of the current programs will change, but soon even more will be offered.

The two-year search for a college to set up shop in Ardmore ended on Tuesday, but Higher Education Center director Dr. Steve Mills says the center's current curriculum will not change.

"All the programs will stay the same as they have been. Murray State will keep offering, East Central will keep offering, and Southeastern will keep offering."

Questions have also been asked about what will happen to the Higher Ed Center's current building. Mills says the Ardmore School District owns that building, but the Higher Ed Center will be allowed to continue using the facility until plans for the new branch campus are finalized.

"They’ve assured us until that time we’re ready to leave we would be able to stay and operate until we build a new campus."

It’s just one of the benefits of the new college will be expanded programs.

"Southeastern has a highly accredited MBA program. We hope they will continue to do that and offer that here in Ardmore."

There is still a bit of red tape to get through before construction on the campus can start. It must still be approved by the state legislature, but educators say they're optimistic.

"The citizens of Ardmore and community are behind it and excited about this. We look forward to have the branch campus coming to Ardmore."

Final plans for the transition will be introduced in the 2008 Legislative Session.

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