NCWU Extends Real-World Experiences Through Practical Skills Academy

ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan University has instituted a Practical Skills Academy (PSA) to offer life and professional skills to students in areas not typically covered in traditional coursework. Some of the learning opportunities that will be available starting fall 2022 include personal finance, navigating contracts, completing W-4 forms and other HR documents, presenting proposals, professional communication and appearance, work ethic and fine dining.

Learning opportunities will exist within the PSA, as well as demonstrated in some curricula through applied learning assignments. Faculty and staff will guide students as they develop practical skills that are broadly useful, fully transferable, and applicable to any challenge or career. The skills cultivated by our faculty and built into our curriculum include critical thinking and reflection, communication, collaboration, and information technology. Through this applied educational approach, faculty will help students connect their learning outcomes to real-world skills they will use in their personal and professional lives.

“At NC Wesleyan, we demonstrate what it means to be personal, practical and purpose-driven. Through our new Practical Skills Academy, we’re excited to offer students the chance to learn what it takes to be a well-rounded professional and world citizen. Upon graduation, they can be confident that what they’ve learned both inside and outside the classroom can be applied to their careers and lives,” stated President Dr. Evan D. Duff.

The University has partnered with Sqwire, an online financial wellness platform designed to help members reclaim ownership of their finances so they can live a more fulfilled, healthy life. Combining comprehensive financial education with personal support, members always have useful information at their fingertips – no matter what financial decisions they make. Nearly 70 lessons break down key concepts and relevant financial topics for everyday living, along with videos, infographics, worksheets, calculators, resources and curated content. Sqwire has partnered with President Duff to expand its suite of learning modules to include tax forms, employment documents, navigating contracts, and other aspects of everyday life. This complete platform will be available to NCWU students in 2023 at no cost.

The Practical Skills Academy will also offer North Carolina Wesleyan University’s newly-developed Resident Expert Program (WES-R.E.P.). This program provides students with an opportunity to work directly with industry leaders through mentoring and workshops. Through on-site and virtual opportunities, these professionals will connect with students to share their industry knowledge. Experts will be chosen in a variety of fields including the fine arts, business, education, healthcare, the sciences and specific professional fields. These high-profile experts are hand-selected by the President and the administrative team. 

About North Carolina Wesleyan University

North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) is a small, private Methodist-affiliated institution with a liberal arts-based core curriculum that prepares students for professional advancement, life-long learning and responsible participation in their communities. NCWU offers liberal arts, professional and graduate degree programs for traditional, transfer and working-adult students. The skills cultivated by faculty and built into the curriculum include critical thinking and reflection, communication, collaboration, and information technology. North Carolina Wesleyan University delivers education that is personal, practical and purpose-driven. Personal…through mentoring and the connections that are provided. Practical…by helping students develop lifelong skills. Purpose-driven…by helping them fulfill their purpose in life. With students from all over the United States and more than 40 different countries, the University has immense cultural diversity. To learn more, visit and follow on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok and Instagram.

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