ASA College Gives Students Formula for Professional, Entrepreneurial Success By Australia Gordon | Legacy Miami Education Issue

Leon-Lee Roberts, Chairperson of Divisions of Business and Engineering Technology

As the country reemerges from the economic consequences of COVID-19, workers and students seek alternative and affordable paths to learn skills in growing sectors. ASA College is among the nation’s fastest-growing institutions delivering a multi-disciplinary career-centered curriculum. While some colleges focus on preliminary coursework, ASA emphasizes marketable skills and post-graduate success. 

“I originally came to play basketball,” shared entrepreneur Jessie Fields, a recent ASA graduate. “I eventually enjoyed the campus and appreciated my professors.” 

National Center for Education Statistics data reveals student enrollments at career colleges are growing by 8.3 percent. Conversely, enrollments at their traditional four-year counterparts are declining by roughly 10 percent. Leon-Lee Roberts of ASA College’s Hialeah campus attributes this increase to a growing need for students and underemployed workers to enhance competencies and earn money quicker than the traditional college period. He noted the school’s approach included career intervention and support within the first two years of study. 

“During the final semester of their studies, we provide students the opportunity to enroll in an externship. Students acquire a practical skill and potentially get hired,” saidd Roberts, ASA’s Chairman of the Division of Business. “Besides preparing them for the next college, we also prepare them for work if that is the path they choose.”

  An accredited institution, ASA confers associates and bachelor’s degrees in disciplines from Business Administration to Radiologic Technology. In addition to offering a robust sports program, ASA helps registered nurses earn undergraduate degrees. 

“We serve students from different economic and academic backgrounds,” Roberts said. “We target and work with individual students at their level. We evaluate their needs and work to give them tools to succeed.” 

Roberts, a longtime marketing and business executive, said having an experienced faculty gives students another advantage. 

“We prefer to hire instructors with real industry experience. This gives them something to draw from as they teach our students,” Roberts added. 

Like many college students, Fields had to navigate the financial fallout of the pandemic. While pursuing his bachelor’s degree, he had to regroup and elevate his next steps. 

“During COVID-19, I took a break from getting my bachelor’s degree. I did keep working out to stay in basketball shape,” Fields recalled. “Many people complimented me on my shape and asked if I was a trainer.” 

Eventually, Fields leveraged a formula he learned while attending one of Roberts’ courses. 

“I started Fit Fitness, a physical training business,” Fields said. “I grew to serve eight clients. I used Professor Roberts’ formula of having a mission, marketing myself, and serving my target market.” 

This business allowed him to earn money and test his education. Robert points to ASA’s “individualized and personalized approach” as a contributing factor. 

“ASA gives more to students than other schools,” Roberts asserted. “We give more through our personalization throughout the college. From admissions to their last day in school, we are constantly focused on what students need to succeed.” 

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