|UND Receives Two Regional Awards from the University Continuing Education Association|
Julie Hjelle, University of North Dakota student, and Becky Rude, program manager for the Division of Continuing Education, were selected out of a seven-state region for awards presented by the University Continuing Education Association (UCEA). They recently were honored at the annual UCEA Joint Great Plains Mid-America Conference held Oct. 29, 2009, in Lacrosse, Wis.
Hjelle received the 2009 Great Plains Region Outstanding Continuing Education Student award. The award is presented to a current student or graduate of either a credit or non-credit program who is over the age of 25, who has met the challenge of an unconventional educational background, and who has become an inspiration to others by effectively managing multiple commitments and responsibilities while engaged in his or her education.
Hjelle, a semi-truck driver whose route runs from the Midwest to Alaska, is pursing her bachelor’s degree in social science from UND through online, independent study courses. Her route takes her along the Alcan Highway through the Yukon, where cell phone, radio and Internet services are non-existent in most places. To complete her online courses, she downloads her assignments at the few truck stops along the way or at her company’s office in Palmer, Ala., and then works offline to complete them while her husband drives.
“I was very honored to receive the UCEA award,” said Hjelle. “Receiving this award has bolstered my desire to continue working toward a degree. It’s sometimes difficult to fit school in with two jobs and life’s obligations at the age of 39, but I shall persevere. To anyone considering going back to school, I encourage you to give it a try. It would have been easier to have done this right out of high school but it means more to me now.”
Becky Rude received the 2009 Great Plains Region Professional Continuing Educator award. The award is presented to a professional who has entered the field within the last five to ten years, who is actively involved in professional organizations at the state, regional or national levels, and who demonstrates excellent leadership, scholarship and contributions to the field of adult and continuing education.
As the manager of Dietetics and Nutrition for the UND Division of Continuing Education, Rude leads the nationally recognized dietary manager certificate program. Throughout her 10-year career in continuing education, Rude has served as a college professor, authored several certificate courses and edited many textbooks. She recently received the 2009 Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor given by the national Dietary Managers Association.
“I am truly honored by this award from UCEA,” said Rude. “My journey as a faculty member has proven to be rewarding beyond belief. I am indebted to the many professional colleagues and educators who have provided wise counsel, support and encouragement to always keep my focus and priority on students, and then allow everything else to fall into place. The opportunities I have had in the Division of Continuing Education have opened doors (and windows) to learning that has not only allowed me to promote lifelong learning, but also to practice it.”
Founded in 1915, UCEA is the primary U.S. organization for continuing higher education, and assists more than 375 institutions of higher learning and affiliated non-profit organizations to increase access to education through a wide array of programs and services. UCEA also provides national leadership in support of policies that advance workforce and professional development.
For more information about the University Continuing Education Association, visit www.ucea.edu or contact the UND Division of Continuing Education at 1-800-342-8230 or www.conted.und.edu.
-- Jennifer Swangler, Assistant Director of Enrollment Management & Marketing, Continuing Education, firstname.lastname@example.org, 701.777.6374