By Jefri Nazri
In light of the new transfer agreement established between Hudson Valley and The College of Saint Rose, two representatives from Saint Rose visited the college to give a presentation on Project ASPIRE (Adolescence Special Education Preparation for Inclusive and Reflective Educators).
Edward Pieper, associate professor in special education, along with Sarah Stark, Project ASPIRE grant coordinator, talked about how the new transfer agreements will benefit Hudson Valley students who are in the Adolescence Education program.
“Project ASPIRE’s grant was given to us by the United States Office of Special Education. You can earn your bachelor’s and master’s degree in this 5-year integrated undergraduate and graduate program,” said Stark.
The College of Saint Rose is offering guaranteed two-year undergraduate academic scholarships of up to $14,500 per year to those who have qualifying grade point averages.
“If you want to be a regular education teacher, you’ll be certified through this program. … You may teach middle school or high school, or you could be certified as special education teacher, in a co-teaching model class,” said Pieper.
James Davidson, an adolescent education student, said, “I really enjoyed the Project ASPIRE presentation. It was really straightforward and clear-cut. They explained every facet of what they were talking about, they left next to nothing in imagination, and as far as the scholarship program goes, it couldn’t be any better.”
“The new transfer agreement is going to bring more students to the Adolescence Education program,” said Dawn Kolakoski, Teacher Preparation department chair. “They will save a lot of money by starting with us and getting their concentration courses out of the way. A lot of the places that you transfer to, they don’t take every single course so you end up staying an extra semester or in some places an extra year to get your bachelor’s,” she continued, saying that one of her students who is now at SUNY New Paltz will need three more years to earn her bachelor’s degree.
“But with this agreement with Saint Rose, all of the classes will transfer. They’ll go in as juniors, study for two years, get their bachelor’s degree, then one year for the master’s degree. They’ve got wonderful people who are specialized to advise our students. It’s a win-win situation for everybody, we get more students who come here and it’s great for the students. They’re going to save a lot of money with the scholarship grant,” said Kolakoski.