SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Srinivasan Sundara Rajan, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Patten University Announces College Scholarship for First Responders

Firefighters and Police Can Earn Online College Degrees at Discounted Rate With Flexible, Self-Paced Platform

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 05/29/14 -- Patten University, which makes earning a college degree accessible and affordable for working Americans, announced today the national availability of a college scholarship specifically for first responders.

California-based Patten University offers a variety of self-paced, online college degrees that are accredited, affordable and allow students to complete coursework faster based on what they already know, which helps meet the flexibility required by working adults such as emergency responders.

Patten University's First Responders Scholarship offers a reduced tuition of $299 per month for undergraduate courses or $475 per month for graduate courses, a nearly 15 percent discount from Patten's standard monthly tuition rates. These rates include unlimited online classes, ebooks and course materials. This initiative enables firefighters, EMTs, paramedics and police officers the opportunity to earn an accredited Bachelor of Arts, Associate of Arts or Master in Business Administration degree online from Patten. With the scholarship, Patten University offers one of the nation's lowest tuition rates for an online college degree program and enables first responders to earn a college degree debt-free.

By analyzing the work-life balance and time management strategies of working adults, Patten University designed an online platform that is ideally suited for first responders; its self-paced model helps maintain equilibrium between their career, family life and academic performance, especially when working multi-day shifts.

Patten University's online proprietary platform integrates Internet technology with learning. Courses begin with a preview video and initial assessment to find out how much students already know. The more the student knows, the faster they can complete courses, which feature ebooks and videos. Self-assessment tools such as flashcards and quizzes prepare students for the pre-final and final. Patten University's "readiness indicator" gives students the confidence of knowing when they are prepared to take the final exam, which is delivered via online proctoring.

"We are preparing first responders and emergency personnel for future leadership roles while expanding their knowledge, skills and earning potential," said Dr. Thomas Stewart, president of Patten University. "Our program offers self-paced learning and gives credit for what working adults already know, providing the flexibility firefighters and police officers require for completing their college degree affordably and with time flexibility. A college degree is not only important for first responders, it can create a domino effect of benefits for their department, their family and the economy."

A typical online Bachelor's degree at Patten University can be earned in less than three years and an online Master's degree can be earned in less than two years.

During Patten University's scholarship pilot program in San Francisco, Sacramento and Oakland, firefighters and police officers who enrolled reported that earning a degree can provide a key opportunity to elevate their careers and to improve their pensions by qualifying them for higher paying promotions.

Patten University is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and offers online degrees in leadership, psychology, business administration, and strategic management, among others. Patten University also offers concentrations in health care as well as law enforcement and criminal justice.

For complete details about Patten University's First Responder Scholarship, visit http://info.patten.edu/firstresponderscholarship to schedule an appointment with an enrollment advisor.

About Patten University
Patten University is operated by UniversityNow, Inc. Patten offers Associate's, Bachelor's and Master's degrees online and is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Patten University is committed to making higher education accessible and affordable to working adults, no matter the age, location, ethnicity or financial situation. Patten University has expanded its reach through online education while maintaining its commitment to helping working adults acquire the skills and knowledge they need to advance or change their careers. Patten University's flexible online learning platform delivers the freedom to earn a degree on student terms while still enjoying close interaction with faculty and students in an engaging learning environment. Patten University is committed to making education affordable so that students can earn a degree without acquiring a burden of debt. Its innovative tuition model and strategic reduction of bureaucratic overhead allows us to lower costs and pass the savings to the students. Learn more at www.patten.edu, www.facebook.com/PattenUniversity, or on Twitter at @pattenu.

About UniversityNow
UniversityNow is a social venture committed to making higher education accessible and affordable for working Americans. Headquartered in San Francisco, UniversityNow offers a breakthrough learning platform that employs a unique model of individualized instruction, self-paced learning, and cutting-edge collaborative technologies designed to facilitate student-to-instructor and peer-to-peer learning with support that is customized to each student's needs. Visit www.unow.com or www.facebook.com/universitynow or on Twitter at @unow.

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