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Mississippi University Opens Online College

Mississippi University for Women, a public university in Columbus, has launched a new independent online college catering to working professionals seeking to complete degrees, adult learners needing to acquire or update skills, and community college students who want to finish their four-year degrees. The new college will be separate from the institution's current online programs.

The new school is named V³ College, derived from the Latin phrase, "veni, vidi, vici" ("I came, I saw, I conquered"). V³ will attempt to woo students nationwide by charging the same tuition for in-state and out-of-state students--$702 per course or $234 per credit hour.

V³, with classes starting in August 2010, will offer eight bachelor degrees, including programs in public safety administration, human resources, and management information. Mississippi U for Women has fewer online programs in areas that include health education, nursing, and general business.

The two institutions will distinguish themselves in several ways. First, V³ refers to clients instead of students on its Web site. "We look at the individual as a client we serve and not as a traditional student," said Bill Mayfield, director of V³ College. "We embrace individual learning styles by stimulating the imagination, emotions, senses, and intellect by completely immersing the client." Second, faculty members won't necessarily hold higher-level degrees; the Web site said they would be "certified" to teach online and "experts in their fields."

V³ has signed agreements with Mississippi Delta Community College and East Mississippi Community College to partner with its Bachelor of Technology program, allowing community college students to transfer into V³ to obtain their four-year degrees without leaving their home regions.

East Mississippi CC President Rick Young said he's excited about the new relationship and the possibilities for his students. "At EMCC, we talk about knocking down the barriers that stand between people and opportunity, and this new, seamless transition from community college to MUW will be of great assistance to our students," Young said.

V³ is accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs and Southern Association of College and Schools through MUW. All funds generated through V³ will be fed back to the university, according to spokeswoman Ashley Strange.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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