Flags indicating that a building is part of the University of Maine at Farmington campus line the streets of Farmington on Dec. 5, 2022. Credit: Sawyer Loftus / BDN

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We all know that life can get complicated quickly and college and career paths are far from linear. Sometimes students leave college to work, or take care of family members, or “life” just happens. Around a third of Maine students do not complete a four-year degree within six years. The University of Maine at Farmington is working to change this.

As a proud UMF alum now working for Educate Maine, helping fellow Mainers develop career readiness by increasing education attainment, I think it’s great news that UMF has created a new program to help adults complete their bachelor’s degrees.

Once someone leaves college, the challenges to return and graduate can be daunting. UMF’s new program provides returning students with academic advisers to support each student in creating a personalized degree completion plan, helps with credits transfers and identifies possible work and life experiences eligible for college credits. Classes are flexible and are offered online, hybrid, in the evenings, or on Saturdays. Some classes can be as short as eight weeks and start multiple times during the year.

This is a dynamic new program which supports more Mainers in their journeys to college graduation, which in turn will assist Maine’s educational attainment goal that 60 percent of adults will hold a credential of value by 2025.

Congratulations to UMF for their work helping make higher education more accessible, no matter a person’s life path.

Jonathan Delorme

Workforce development specialist

Educate Maine