OpenLearning Announces New Partnership with University of Louisiana at Lafayette


OpenLearning is thrilled to be introducing a new partner The University of Louisiana at Lafayette. For nearly 124 years, The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has put its students at the heart of its philosophy and teachings. Recognizing the importance of lifelong learning, the Office of Professional and Continuing Education was founded to address professional learning, career training and academic enrichment.

“Continuing education is changing at many colleges and universities, including UL Lafayette, because workforce needs are changing. People increasingly want to enhance professional skills – or add new ones. So we’re pivoting, providing more options to support employees and businesses.”

Martha Bryant
Director, Office of Professional and Continuing Education at University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Dr. Martha Bryant is the Director, of the Office of Professional and Continuing Education at University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She has been in the education field for thirty-seven years. She is experienced in K-12 instruction, educational technology and curriculum design. Her dissertation focused on MOOCs impact on the learning environment and executive leadership. She is optimistic of the University’s success in the delivery of MOOCs for continuing education certifications.

The shift is being driven, in part, by employee shortages in some industries as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It also reflects a trend toward more partnerships among businesses and higher education. “Companies are investing in the sort of training universities are positioned to give for a variety of reasons, whether it’s to foster leadership among employees, or to help them learn about workplace culture,” Bryant explained.

University faculty and staff members, graduate assistants, and businesspersons who are experts in their fields will lead Office of Professional and Continuing Education offerings, all of which will be delivered virtually via the OpenLearning platform.

The office will continue to offer a range of its popular certificate programs and courses, dozens of offerings that include ACT and notary public exam readiness, and human resources and food safety training. It will bolster its existing certificate programs, courses and training opportunities, however, with new offerings that “fill an existing need,” Bryant said.

Case in point: the office’s new “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” course, a series of eight, 90-minute sessions that explore diversity in the workplace. The course will cover social justice, inclusion in recruitment, hiring and retention practices, fostering workplace understanding and support, and other topics. People who register for the course can complete sessions at their own pace. The goal is to prepare students for the future of work by delivering top-quality courses designed to develop high-demand skills.

“We will launch a new module each week that can be watched in one sitting or, based on participants’ schedules, in blocks. They will, however, be required to complete all of the coursework requirements in a specified amount of time,” Bryant explained.

“Going forward, we will collaborate with a range of campus colleges, departments and offices on initiatives and programs related to professional learning and certification,” Bryant said.

OpenLearning is delighted to partner with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette to help learners prepare for successful careers through continuing education. Acknowledging the time constraints of full-time workers, digital education through OpenLearning has made it easy for professionals to refresh their skills through self-directed learning in a very seamless way.

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