Trellis Celebrates First Graduates in Partnership with Ochsner Health
NEW ORLEANS — Trellis, a program of Tulane’s Cowen Institute that launched in 2020, celebrated its first graduating class in December. Trellis helps working adults complete Southern New Hampshire University’s online, project-based AA and BA degree programs.
Trellis is designed for working adults to return to college and graduate with a degree that will help them advance their careers. The enrollment team works with regional employers like Ochsner Health to identify staff who need a college degree to open advancement opportunities.
Ochsner partners with Trellis as part of its commitment to workforce development and career advancement.
“Partners like Trellis allow Ochsner to help its employees gain more opportunity and lead more productive lives, a goal in making our region a healthier and better place to live for all,” said Missy Sparks, vice president of talent management at Ochsner Health. “These programs show that Ochsner is committed to our workforce, and to investing in the people who work together with our care teams to serve our patients now and into our future.”
Trellis students work full time while pursuing their college degree. SNHU coursework is self-paced and entirely online, so students build their study schedule around their work, family, and other time commitments. Students meet with their Trellis coach once a week to check on progress to goals, troubleshoot challenges and provide motivation and accountability. Trellis also provides laptops and internet hot spots for students who need them, so technology is not a barrier to student success.
Each member of Trellis’ first group of graduates completed their AA degree in less than two years, a significant improvement over the Louisiana average time to AA completion of over five years. Trellis is also designed for students to graduate with little to no debt so they can realize the increased earning potential of their college degree without burdensome monthly loan repayments. Nationally the average amount of student debt on AA degree completion is $20,400. Trellis’ first group of graduates finished degrees with $500 in debt on average.