The Woods College of Advancing Studies is expanding Boston College’s mission of education and social justice through unique undergraduate and graduate programs designed to accommodate non-traditional students.
Founded in 1929 as the fourth school at Boston College, Woods College offers evening, Saturday, online, and hybrid online and on campus courses to 800 students each semester.
“Woods College is committed to providing non-traditional learners with high quality education that is also accessible and affordable,” said Associate Dean of Enrollment Management Claudia Pouravelis. “Woods demands of its students the same high standards in academics, moral character, and commitment to the betterment of society required of all of Boston College’s traditional undergraduate students.”
Although some WCAS students are recent high school graduates, others have transferred from other colleges or are returning to college to finish coursework or obtain another degree. Many students are also juggling a part-time or full-time job and other commitments.
“[The Woods College] remains true to an early mission of Boston College: to educate students who may not otherwise have the opportunity to obtain a college education,” said Pouravelis.
Currently, the Woods College offers 14 undergraduate majors, five graduate programs, and multiple certificates, several of which are not available elsewhere at BC.
“All of our graduate programs are unique to the Woods College,” said Pouravelis. “We offer the first online program at Boston College, a Master of Healthcare Administration, as well as on campus degree programs in Applied Economics, Leadership and Administration, and Cybersecurity, Policy & Governance.”
She continued, “We are the only college to offer a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal & Social Justice, which is a growing field, as well as Bachelor of Arts degrees in Corporate Systems and Information Systems & Technology. We are the only undergraduate college at BC to offer a certificate in Criminal and Social Justice.”
Woods also offers undergraduate and graduate certificates in “unique and cutting edge fields” including Human Resources, Information Systems & Technology, Finance, Management, and Criminal & Social Justice, which require only four to six courses.
Woods classes are taught by faculty from the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences, Carroll School of Management, Connell School of Nursing, other higher education institutions, and from the industry in the field of study.
These classes are also available to day students from the four undergraduate schools, with an average of 400 enrolling in WCAS every semester.
In addition to access to unique degree programs, taking evening classes at Woods increases students’ flexibility to complete credits needed for graduation.
“Many Woods College courses, including Nutrition for Life taught by Dr. Sheila Tucker, Law and Society taught by Judge James Menno, and Documentary Film with John Michalczyk and Susan Michalczyk, are extremely popular with undergraduate day students and fill every semester,” said Pouravelis. “Other courses that may be appealing to undergraduate day students include Social Networking in the Digital Age, Survey of African Literature, and Writers and the Catholic Imagination.”
In order to take a class at Woods, day students must go to St. Mary’s Hall on the first day of the semester to register. They may only take one Woods class each semester, and it cannot be an online, hybrid, Saturday, or pass-fail course.