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Demand forces Portland State to expand new athletic and outdoor certificate
Author: Matt Kish, Portland Business Journal
Posted: October 14, 2013

Click here for the original article.

Portland State University is opening up a popular program to non-PSU students.

This fall the university launched a certificate program for undergraduate students who want to work in the athletic and outdoor industries.

The program solicited so much demand from nonstudents Portland State decided to offer a condensed version to professionalswho already hold a bachelor's degree.

Starting in January, non-PSU students can take five classes over a five-month span and earn the certificate through the university's continuing education arm.

The program for nonstudents is essentially a condensed version of the undergraduate program. Students will get 75 hours of classroom instruction instead of the 200 hours undergraduates receive.

Courses will cover merchandizing, materials sourcing, competitive dynamics and sales.

Classes will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 6-9 p.m.

Portland is already a hotbed for the athletic and outdoor industries. The program will build on that reputation.

"The goal is that we'll be considered a knowledge gathering place for the industry,” said program founder Lauren Beitelspacher, an assistant professor of marketing, in a news release. "I hope companies will consider us first when hiring for entry-level positions, and will look to develop their employees with the non-credit program."

The program's business partners include Nike, Adidas, Columbia Sportswear, The Clymb, Leatherman, KEEN, Gerber Legendary Blades and Korkers Footwear.

"I think (the program) will help raise the level of industry knowledge and access for an increasingly smarter, more well-trained workforce within the industry that will benefit small, mid-level and larger companies in the region," said Sean Beers, CEO of Portland-based Korkers, in a news release.