COMMUNITY CONSCIENCE PICKING A SCHOOL THAT FITS YOUR YOUNG ADULT
My college roommate, Kevin Donovan, called Dillon, Montana, home. Kevin’s mother, Dottie, was the superintendent of public schools in Dillon, and Kevin’s father, Butch, was the driver’s education teacher and wrestling and football coach for Beaverhead High School. Dottie Donovan may be the only Democrat to have won public office in the history of Beaverhead County, Montana. I have always been fond of Dillon and Beaverhead County but never had it on my own radar when I was choosing a school. However, I am very glad that Andrew was able to make his way 110 miles to this school. UMW has a unique education program called the “block system.” It is the only public university in the United States to offer this program, and UMW calls it Experience One. The block system allows students to focus on a single course at a time for 18 school days. Students attend the course for three hours every day and then, after a four-day weekend, move on to the next course. This process allows students to focus all of their attention on one particular subject. Students at UMW do not have to decide which subject to study on any given night or worry about having three term papers due at the same time. In short, no finals week or “hell week” happens at UMW. You squeeze the oranges one at a time! While this program is not for everyone, we have been absolutely thrilled with Andrew’s ability to transition into university life. While it can seem like a living hell when you are
Raising kids can be a challenging endeavor. When Heather and I got married in 2013, she agreed to take on not only a husband but also two boys, Andrew, who was 12, and Chandler, who was 11. The boys are now 18 and 19 years old and face growing up in a world very different than the one Heather and I knew when we were teenagers. While we are far from perfect parents, we do our best. Our newsletter chronicles some of our successes and some of our less than stellar moments. We hope you can learn from some of our failures and find some entertainment in the moments we share. The Block System at UMW If you have raised children, you know they grow up faster than you ever imagined. The stretch from riding their bicycle to driving a car seems like it takes 12 weeks and not 12 years. Now, Andrew has left the nest and is making his own way in the world. A pretty average student in high school, Andrew found that his favorite place to be was the weight room or the athletic field. Like many of us, Andrew was a little anxious about juggling multiple different college level classes at the same time, and he wanted to continue pursuing his passion for athletics. In the process of weighing where he wanted to go to college, Andrew came across a real treasure in the Treasure State, the University of Montana Western (UMW), located in Dillon, Montana.
stuck in a subject that gives you fits, at least you know the light at the end of the tunnel is no more than a couple of weeks away. As an aside, I would really like to thank the professors at UMW for their willingness to teach in this manner. It is absolutely exhausting teaching a class three hours a day for five days a week. Those three hours are only a small fraction of the time these professors dedicate to their profession. Each and every single student I have met appreciates this program. I suspect the biggest barrier to its implementation on a larger scale may be that it does ask a lot of professors. While not perfect, this program has worked well for Andrew. Thinking outside the box has worked for him and may be something you want to consider as your children decide which road to take after high school. Andrew is very happy to be attending the University of Montana Western. Go Dawgs!
- Lucas Foust
406-587-3720 • 1www.lucasfoustlaw.com
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