Clarkson University to Bring New Higher Education Options to California's Placer County Region

Article ID: 614519

Released: 3-Mar-2014 2:00 PM EST

Source Newsroom: Clarkson University

  • Clarkson University President Tony Collins (left) met on February 24 with Sierra College President Willy Duncan (right), and Placer County, Rocklin Chamber of Commerce, Roseville Chamber of Commerce, City of Rocklin, City of Roseville, and Sacramento Regional Technology Alliance leaders to further emerging technology education partnerships in the Placer County region.

Newswise — Placer County, Calif., and Potsdam, N.Y. -- Clarkson University officials will be in the Placer County region this week to introduce area professionals to new graduate programs options and to advance an emerging technology education partnership with Sierra College undergraduates. Clarkson University President Tony Collins met last week with Sierra College President Willy Duncan, and Placer County, Rocklin Chamber of Commerce, Roseville Chamber of Commerce, City of Rocklin, City of Roseville, and Sacramento Regional Technology Alliance leaders.

Located in New York State’s Adirondack North Country region, Clarkson University is a nationally ranked research university and known among employers in technology and innovation sectors as a target school for recruiting, research and executive education.

“In addition to access to world-class outdoor recreation, the North Country and Placer County share a commitment to mobilize the creativity and capacity of higher education partnerships with industry and the public sector to drive economic development and family sustaining jobs.” Collins said. “Clarkson’s education, research and innovation agenda aligns with the vision outlined by Roseville’s Higher Education Task Force and with the dialogue we have had with community leaders interested in high quality educational opportunities to support future growth in business, engineering, science and technology.”

"Clarkson’s rankings in online education and its deep partnerships with industry reflect a commitment to treat distance education as an opportunity to enhance and enrich the learning experience for motivated students, without sacrificing the academic rigor that employers and recruiters value in the curriculum,” said Dayle Smith, dean of the Clarkson School of Business and one of the key drivers in the new partnerships being formed. Smith, along with Kerop Janoyan, Director of Distance Learning, and Clarkson alumni will be at SARTA’s TechEdge Conference on Friday and meeting with area officials and corporate representatives this week.

Collaborating with area civic and community leaders, Clarkson is preparing to augment its current online graduate course offerings with a presence in the Placer County region and also is working with Sierra College on a 2+2+2 articulation agreement between the two institutions. In the unique arrangement, students will matriculate to Clarkson to complete a bachelor’s degree in business or engineering after completing two years of coursework at Sierra College. The two years in residence in New York will be supplemented with internship/career opportunities with companies common in Placer County valley and then coupled in the end with the two-year professional distance programs offered by Clarkson.

“This partnership underscores our continued commitment to increase higher education opportunities for the students in our communities,” said Sierra College President Willy Duncan. "Working together with Clarkson University will provide our students with a new seamless pathway to a top research and technological institution for their Baccalaureate degree and beyond. Students will also have the opportunity to be placed with one of our industry partners in the region while they pursue an advanced degree, keeping our best and brightest talent living and working in our communities.”

“We see Clarkson’s partnership with Sierra College in offering high caliber programs that are in high demand right here in our region as another success for Roseville’s Higher Education Task Force efforts,” said Roseville City Councilmember Dr. Tim Herman, chair of the task force. “The synergy between education and economic development will strengthen our region as education provides innovation and workers, and industry provides support and employment."

For more information about Clarkson University options in Placer County, visit, or inquire to Dr. Kerop Janoyan, Director of Distance Learning in the Office of the Provost and Executive Officer for Civil and Environmental Engineering, at 315-268-6506,

More About Clarkson University’s Distance Learning Options

Clarkson offers distance learning graduate study opportunities in business, engineering, science and technology through a unique click-and-brick model. The University’s off-campus graduate programs engage students in both their places of employment through either real-time or self-directed collaborative learning and use of real-time work projects -- the click part of the equation -- and on campus -- the brick -- through intense immersion experiences.

The Placer County program is unique in that Clarkson faculty will travel to California at key points for the "brick" portion of the program, rather than have students travel to Clarkson. Working with employers in Placer County, Clarkson University representatives are in negotiations to bring their faculty to cohorts of graduate students located in the region for these immersion sessions.

"The virtual synchronous classroom sessions allow me to attend class from where I need to -- whether from home, work, or other remote locations -- and have given me the ability to easily incorporate the part-time schooling into my lifestyle," says Ashlie M. Gregoire, transportation sourcing lead for Johnson & Johnson Sales & Logistics Company's CLS Regional Transportation Organization (North America) and an online Clarkson graduate student. "The best part is the fact that there is still live interaction with my professors, as well as my peers in industry, as if I were sitting in a classroom with them. I am already using what I have learned in the two classes I am now taking and applying it to situations I experience in the workplace on a daily basis."

With their students, faculty focus on engagement and content learning in a team dynamic, replicating how many working professionals in the technology sector interact with their colleagues. Students who choose to enroll in the Placer County offerings will also have the opportunity to engage with alumni who live and work in the region’s technology and innovation sectors. These Clarkson alumni will play a key role in advancing opportunities for students in the graduate programs and from Sierra College to gain a coast-to-coast educational experience.

More About Sierra College

Sierra College serves 3,200 square miles of Northern California with campuses in Roseville, Rocklin, Grass Valley, and Truckee. With approximately 125 degree and certificate programs, Sierra College is ranked first in Northern California (Sacramento north) for transfers to four year universities, offers career/technical training, and classes for upgrading job skills. Sierra graduates can be found in businesses and industries throughout the region. More information at, or follow Twitter ‘Like’ Facebook Page! .More About Clarkson University

Founded as a private technological institution in 1896 in Potsdam, New York, Clarkson University’s main campus is located just outside the boundaries of the Adirondack Park and near the Canadian border, offering a unique vantage for international commerce and creating economic opportunities within protected landscapes. Its faculty engages students in 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences with a focus on spanning boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures. The end result is the acceleration of research and innovation into enterprise.

One in five alumni is a CEO, vice president, owner or other senior executive of a company. ABC News and PayScale named Clarkson among 12 schools with higher starting salaries than Harvard graduates with the return on education driven largely by the institution’s attention to following corporate trends and needs. Affordable Colleges Online also put Clarkson in its 2013 list of the top 30 private colleges with Million-Dollar Returns on Investment.

Clarkson is recognized by US News as the No. #1 school in the nation for offering students internship experiences. The University is also credited among the first institutions to offer an Engineering & Management major more than 50 years ago. Clarkson’s Engineering and Management program is now one of only two programs in the world to be accredited by both AACSB International and the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. Its online MBA and Engineering Management programs have been ranked in the top 15 by US News & World Report.

Find out more about Clarkson at, on Twitter at @ClarksonUniv, or on Facebook at .

More About Clarkson President Tony Collins

Clarkson President Tony Collins is a national advocate for higher education-industrial partnerships that couple research discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise for commercialization and economic development. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed Collins in 2011 to serve as the co-chair of New York’s North Country Regional Economic Development Council and also as a member of the Moreland Commission, which made recommendations to overhaul regulation of utility and emergency management systems in New York. Collins has just finished a term as the national chair of the Association of Independent Technological Universities (, an organization of leading private American technological universities, whose mission is to play a vital role in securing the future of American competitiveness in the global marketplace.

More About the City of Roseville’s Higher Education Task Force

The City of Roseville, Calif., convened a Task Force in July 2011 to develop recommendations for expanding higher education opportunities in the community. The Council’s over-arching goal was to bring to Roseville the benefits of a greater number and diversity of higher education institutions, including increased access to higher education for Roseville residents, job creation and economic development, and increased cultural opportunities.

The Task Force’s report, Strategies for Creating Higher Education Opportunities in Roseville, includes a vision for the Roseville / South Placer area becoming a cluster for higher education facilities and identifies short and long-term action steps for achieving that vision. The Task Force developed the recommendations to be relevant to stakeholders from the region, including leaders from education, business and industry, philanthropic groups, economic development forums, and elected officials. A premise of the recommendations is that partnerships across sectors are essential to maximize success.


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