Ed. Dept. creates dedicated space for adult education

Distant Learning Programs Coordinator, Nicole Cabral and Adult Education Program Manager Dr. Jonathan Hunstiger, run a software program called “GED Academy,” in the new Adult Education Space, Wednesday, Sept. 4.
The Southern Ute Education Center’s dedicated space for adult education programs and testing officially opened for the community at the end of August.
Jeremy Wade Shockley | The Southern Ute Drum
Jeremy Wade Shockley | The Southern Ute Drum

The Southern Ute Education Department unveiled a dedicated space at the Education Center with an emphasis on supporting adult education.

The study space officially opened up on Aug. 26, offering a fast Wi-Fi network, computers, and a study worthy ambience. Convenience and accessibility were key factors in regards to choosing the location.

Distant Learning Programs Coordinator, Nicole Cabral emphasized, “All adult learners, GED to PhD, are welcome in this space to study and learn.”

The new facility provides a central location, and fills in the gap left by the Pine River Community Learning Center.

“This is a quiet space set aside for studying,” explained Dr. Jonathan Hunstiger, Adult Education Program Manager “We’re trying to be a bit more responsive to the needs of the community.”

The Education Department staff can help adults prepare for their General Educational Development (GED) tests.

The center is using a software program called GED Academy. Adult Education students are responsible for their testing fees which are typically around $40 per test. Those fees are covered for Southern Ute tribal members and other Native Americans through a BIA grant. Students referred by the Ignacio School District for the GED will be funded by the school district.

“They can take practice tests here, as well as the official test,” Hunstiger explained.

The new study space is something that So. Ute Education is providing for the community through a partnership with the Ignacio Community Library and Ignacio High School.

The program is not just geared towards GED services, there is also a strong focus on adult education.

Through a partnership with CU Boulder, “We are hosting the Mini-Law School which started Sept. 10, Cabral stated. “The program is filled and will be offered again next year — in addition to the Mini-Med School.”

“A lot of what Nicole and I do goes back and forth — it’s a collaboration,” Hunstiger emphasized. “We have created a sanctified — designated adult space here at the Education Center. Offering classes that have been requested here in the community.”  Adult learners can utilize this space Monday- Friday 8a.m.-5p.m.

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