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OCC Introduces New Human Resource and Office Administration Programs

Office PhotoOlney Central College has added two new degrees and a certificate to its Office Preparation Programs.

Beginning this fall, students can complete a Human Resource Assistant Degree or an Office Administration Certificate and Degree.

The two-year HR program prepares students for entry-level jobs in the Human Resource field performing tasks such as maintaining employee files and managing worker compensation and benefits, as well as providing employee training and managing staff.

Through their coursework, students will explore how HR professionals develop and attract employees, handle disputes, conduct discipline and interact with a variety of people in various work settings.

Instructor Amie Mayhall noted the program can benefit small business owners and those already working in the field who wish to develop and enhance their HR skills.

“We see a real need for this type of program in the community,” Mayhall said. “With the increasing ethical and legal demands, even entry-level HR employees require training in the field. We have instructors who are passionate in the field of HR. We are very excited that Tara Buerster, the Director of Human Resources for Illinois Eastern Community Colleges, will be teaching the legal aspects of HR.”

Other instructors include Shasta Bennett, who holds a master’s degree in Global Human Resource Management from the University of Illinois, and Mayhall, who has a Master of Business Administration Degree.

During the course of the program, Mayhall said students will utilize HR software programs which provide real-life scenarios.

“We also have established internship opportunities for the students which will give them the hands-on experience they need,” she said.

Through the one- and two-year Office Administration programs, students will attain the skills needed for utilizing office technology, creating presentations, developing databases, designing newsletters, setting up telephone and web conferences and creating spreadsheets.

Students will study Microsoft Office applications including word processing, spreadsheets, databases, desktop publishing and other communication technologies. In addition, they will take Microsoft certification exams in Word, Excel and Access.

“The program qualifies graduates for entry-level office positions and can lead to supervisory positions,” Mayhall said.

Office Administration provides a course of study devoted entirely to preparing students to work in a general office setting, which Mayhall says will fill a need within the community.

Mayhall noted the certificate’s curriculum is the same as the first-year coursework for the Human Resource Assistant Degree, giving students the option of earning either the Office Administration or the HR Degree with two additional semesters of study.

A majority of the classes will be available online to meet students’ scheduling needs and many courses are transferable if students wish to continue their education at a four-year institution.

Mayhall said the HR Degree and the Office Administration Certificate and Degree will expand OCC’s already extensive office-related programs, which include Medical Coding, Microsoft Office Specialist and Medical Office Assistant.

For more information, contact Mayhall at To register, call 618-395-7777. Classes start Aug. 21.

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