COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Aspen Bauman started a new job this week.
On Sunday, he will graduate from the Ohio State University with a degree in food business management.
“Without the Complete Ohio State program, I definitely would have never gotten a job with what I went to school for,” he said.
Bauman was one of the first participants in the Complete Ohio State program, which aims to help former students who left school before finishing their degrees.
In Bauman’s case, he stopped taking classes last spring.
“I got a bit bogged down with how much I was working to try and support myself while being in school and stuff like that,” he said.
Shortly thereafter, Bauman joined the program.
Complete Ohio State supports returning students in a number of ways, including by assisting them in the re-enrollment process and by reconnecting them with academic advisers.
According to Kris Wethington, the program manager, financial assistance is available to eligible students as well.
“By bringing them back, helping them through to that degree, that opens up more opportunities for them to move forward in their careers, and to be successful and contribute back in the way they want to,” Wethington said.
Students who participate in the program must meet a number of eligibility requirements, which include having a 2.0 GPA or higher and being no more than 30 credit hours from completing a degree.
To view the requirements and to fill out a form expressing interest in the program, click here.
Wethington urges anyone who is interested in completing their coursework to submit a form, even if they are not eligible.
“I’m so committed to wanting to help students to kind of return and finish their degree,” she said. “I will help them make those connections regardless of whether they do full participation in this program or not.”
Wethington and Beth Hume, the vice provost for Student Academic Success, both hope to see more students participate in Complete Ohio State.
“What this program helps with is giving them a champion, giving them someone, an advocate, who can be working with them to help navigate what’s necessary,” Hume said.
As for Bauman, he, too, hopes more people receive their degrees, like him.
“If I didn’t have this degree, I definitely wouldn’t have been able to get a job doing what, so far, I love doing,” he said. “I’m so glad that I love this job.”