FAYETTE, Iowa (October 24, 2008)-Upper Iowa University is one of nine schools chosen last month to help upgrade the FBI National Academy Associates (FBINAA) academic partnership program.
Gary Foster, FBINAA chief operating officer, was assigned the responsibility to improve its existing higher education partnerships and drew upon his personal experience in establishing the new criteria. Foster started in law enforcement in 1975 with only a high school education. While working full-time, he earned an associate degree in Police Science and a bachelor's degree in Public Administration from Upper Iowa University's Des Moines Center.
"I have experienced firsthand how difficult it is to fit your education around your work schedule," said Foster. "I know what it feels like when credits you earn at one school won't transfer to another, and I know how the cost of earning a degree sometimes determines whether or not it is attainable."
As a result, Foster has made the following factors key to program redesign-accreditation, transfer of credits, flexibility, technology, variety of degree programs, and financial aid. "We have chosen to partner with only fully-accredited, regional schools," said Foster. "Although there are a lot of good schools out there, we felt choosing only regionally accredited helps support ease of credit transfer, applicable degree programs, tuition cost, and financial aid."
Foster says the partnership between the FBINAA and institutions of higher learning like Upper Iowa University will permit its members to receive the necessary education to deliver quality services to the public they serve and the educational qualifications needed to reach maximum career potential.
"Let's face it, an education opens doors. Lack of an education can close them," said Foster. "I realize I have been afforded opportunities that would not have been possible without a baccalaureate degree."
The FBINAA is a non-profit international organization of senior law enforcement professionals dedicated to providing communities and the profession with the highest degree of law enforcement expertise, training, education and information. Over 36,000 students have graduated from the FBINAA, of which 7% of the students are international, U.S. territories and possessions.
To learn more about the FBINAA academic partnership program, go to www.uiu.edu/fbinaa.
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