University College at Houlton offers distance learning courses and degrees through the University of Maine System, including Associate Degrees in Liberal Arts, Liberal Studies, Social Services, Business Administration and Financial Services, Library and Information Services, and Medical Laboratory Technology. It also offers Bachelor Degrees in Applied Science, Liberal Studies, Business Administration, Library and Information Services and Mental Health and Human Services. Master’s Degrees are offered in Adult Education, Counseling/Rehabilitation Counseling, and Liberal Studies.
Northern Maine Community College
Since 1963, Northern Maine Community College has been a statewide and county-wide leader in this type of off-campus partnership. Annually, 70 to 80 students attend NMCC classes at the Houlton Center. Classes are offered in the areas of business, allied health, and liberal studies.
Liberal Studies – The Houlton Center provides southern Aroostook citizens the opportunity to enroll in an affordable, part time college program while retaining local employment and living at home. Many liberal studies students advance to the registered nurse program, to another full-time major on the Presque Isle campus, or to a four-year University program.
Early College for ME and Aspirations – These college programs are available to qualified high school students at little or no cost to the student.
RSU 29/70 Houlton, Hodgdon Adult Education
The RSU 29/70 Houlton, Hodgdon Adult Education program has been serving the area with high school completion, HiSET, vocational, and community education since 1966.
Diploma and HiSET– Annually, over 30 students graduate from MSAD 29-70 Adult Education. The program also partners with Literacy Volunteers of Aroostook to offer basic literacy instruction.
College Access Program – CAP assists adults in the transition to college level courses at any Maine institution of higher education. CAP builds math and writing skills as well as the self-confidence needed to succeed in college. The program averages over 20 students per year.
Vocational Training – This includes Certified Nurse Assistant classes at local nursing homes and Qualified Logging Professional training in sustainable logging practices.
Agricultural Winter Schools – For nearly 20 years, the program has partnered with Cooperative Extension and the Southern Aroostook Soil and Water Conservation District in these programs.
Technology – PLATO online continues to be an important learning tool to help students prepare for the HiSET and for college.
The Local Workforce Investment Board – This program cooperates with MSAD 29/70 Adult Education to offer the WorkReady program. Participants complete a 60-hour course focusing on the “soft skills” that are important in today’s workplace.
Family Literacy – This involves partnering with Head Start programs to provide books for the First Book program and outreach to parents of First Book students. The program recognizes the value of the parent as the child’s first teacher and commits to helping the parent fulfill that role.
Carleton Project is a licensed, private alternative high school that offers students in grades 9 to 12 the opportunity to obtain their high school diploma in a non-traditional setting. It has four locations: Houlton, Presque Isle, Bangor and Winthrop. Carleton Project works closely with Aroostook County schools and the University of Maine at Presque Isle; its Presque Isle school is located on the UMPI campus. Carleton Project’s mission is “helping young adults in our community reach their unique potential.” Its model and approach are unique in that it takes a very individualized approach with each student. Graduates not only achieve their core curriculum but also secure practical life skills and strategies to carry with them. In addition, graduating students must present a one-year transition plan in order to graduate. By collaborating with UMPI and NMCC, students have the opportunity to enroll in college courses during their senior year of high school. Most graduates go on to post-secondary education, into the military, or immediately to work in the community. To date, more than 400 students have earned their high school diplomas through Carleton Project. All of these students were previously unsuccessful in public schools.
TRiO College Access Services
TRiO College Access Services is a federally funded program that prepares underserved high school students for college and is open to high school students who qualify financially, or are the first in their families to attend college. Its mission is to generate, in eligible participants, the skills and motivation necessary for success in education beyond high school. Some of the services provided are academic advising, tutoring, college visits, cultural events, and a residential summer program at UMPI. Upward Bound serves students in all 16 Aroostook County high schools. The program has been successful in assisting participants, who might not otherwise have attended, to go to college and persist until they meet their degree goals.
Maine Educational Opportunity Center
The mission of Maine Educational Opportunity Center is to increase the awareness of post secondary educational opportunities available to Maine’s low income, first generation adults who desire to pursue a post secondary education. MEOC is a federal education initiative established to promote access to post-secondary education for traditionally under-represented adult populations within the State of Maine. MEOC in Houlton coordinates efforts with area schools, colleges, and other service agencies to provide information and assistance in completing college admission and financial aid forms. MEOC advisors assess academic readiness, provide career counseling, and refer individuals to community resources. MEOC is committed to assisting any adult wishing to re-enter a formal education setting, and helping them to successfully match career goals to education plans with the goal of ultimately earning a college degree. Funded to serve traditionally under-represented adults, the majority of MEOC participants are of the first generation in their families to go to college.