Finish What You Started!


Adults who want to complete their college education can tailor a University of Maine degree program to match their work, interests, schedules and lifestyles.

For students whose educations were interrupted by work, family, military service or just the responsibilities of life, UMaine offers a Bachelor of University Studies (B.U.S.) degree. In the program, students can design their own custom courses of study, or they can choose one of three established tracks.

The program is available only through the University of Maine’s Division of Lifelong Learning both on campus and fully online. Each student, in consultation with an advisor, designs a program leading to specific educational goals, but not necessarily within any one department, division, school or college.

“As a military veteran, a family man and business leader, UMaine’s Bachelor of University Studies program, with its flexible schedule and online curriculum, has been essential to my continued educational success,” said Chad Caron, a Bangor-area manager with Dead River Company. “This program opens up real possibilities for so many ‘nontraditional’ students to further their education. The curriculum is thought-provoking and engaging.”

What can graduates do with a BUS degree? The program is intended to complement existing interests and career goals. For example, a skilled laborer thinking about moving into management may want to broaden his or her education by incorporating some business and leadership courses into an approved curriculum. Program advisors encourage students to design programs around their personal or professional interests.

To qualify for admission, applicants must be high school graduates or the equivalent, and must have completed at least 18 credit hours with at least a 2.0 grade point average either at the University of Maine or through acceptable transfer credits from accredited, post-secondary institutions. Applicants must participate in an interview with a University Studies advisor to discuss their goals, objectives and program of study.

As an option to designing their own program, students can choose one of three established tracks:

* Labor Studies is structured to be taught online, with a focus on creating dialog with students about the theories, ideologies and beliefs that support the labor movement, and the practical skills involved in running labor organizations and representing employees.

* Leadership Studies provides students with in-depth knowledge of leadership theory, ethics, skills and context-based issues, as well as practical training. The track prepares students for diverse, real-life experiences as citizen leaders in local, state, national and global communities.

* Maine Studies offers students the opportunity to pursue the study of Maine through courses in history, literature, women’s studies and Native-American studies. The program takes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding historical and contemporary issues, such as developing Maine’s economy, protecting its environment and appreciating the cultures of the state’s diverse population.

More information about the Bachelor of University Studies program is available on the university website or by calling (207) 581-3143.