ASC campus expands beyond the Alamosa community

(10-05-2011)

By: Mariah Pepe

Burlington, Lamar, La Junta, Trinidad, Fort Morgan, Bennett, Denver, Cortez, Durango, Colorado Springs, and Pueblo -- imagine being able to visit all of these beautiful Colorado sights in two months, even better, imagine being paid for it.

Since accepting the Adams State College Extended Studies director of advisement and program development position in July, Louis Deasaro, continues to travel across Colorado and surrounding states recruiting non-traditional students interested in earning an undergraduate degree from Adams State.

Deasaro and his advisors actively recruit working parents; students wanting to take classes for self enrichment; graduates of Colorado Community Colleges, anxious to complete a four-year degree, and incarcerated students. About 7000 students take the online and print based courses, with about 550 actively seeking a degree.

Deasaro and his team remain extremely busy. Beyond the eleven days they spent on the road last month, they are the academic advisors for all of the undergraduate Extended Studies students.

Additionally, Deasaro helps organize the San Luis Valley's College @ High School program, where high school students can take college courses taught on their campus by high school teachers. Not only does this help students get ahead, but it also provides them and their teachers with experience on a higher academic level.

Deasaro, who found the position online, says he "is glad to be in Alamosa". He chose the position here because he enjoys working with young people, especially in an academic setting. He's also heard "great recommendations about Adams State from successful alumni", so he was eager to pursue a career at such a respectable institution.

Overall, he says he and his wife, Cary, are "having fun in Alamosa" while he helps students achieve success and he emphasizes the satisfaction he receives from seeing the results of the team's efforts.

He hopes to focus on what the future workplace will need, so Deasaro is constantly monitoring what skills employers and students will soon need so he can develop corresponding programs through Extended Studies. This innovation is helping students "learn to earn," says Deasaro. "They increase their education in order to increase their paychecks," so the needs of the real world must be addressed in the classroom. Deasaro also hopes to expand the Extended Studies Program in size.

Deasaro, from Staten Island, NY, is breathing new life into the Extended Studies Department at Adams State with his 30 years of experience from the U.S. Navy, he retired as a Navy Captain; his faculty expertise from the United States Naval Academy; the University of New Mexico and the Air Force Air Command and Staff College; and, most recently, his six years in a leadership position at the New Mexico Military Institute in Roswell, NM. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the Naval Academy; an MSA from George Washington University; and an ABD from the University of Alabama.