OCTC was awarded a federal grant to upgrade its online schoolThe Owensboro Community and Technical College (OCTC) has a received a $1.8 million federal grant to expand online classes and services for students, reports the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer.

The grant will fund online enrollment and to ensure the online classes are of good quality, OCTC Jim Klauber told the news source. The majority of money will go towards assisting new students with the transition to online courses.

"Not only are we doing the straight online option, but we're also doing a hybrid option, part online, part in-person," Kevin Beardmore, vice president of student affairs said, quoted by the media outlet. "We just haven't had the funds to grow this out and have the critical mass to reach the students and support them in the first year in particular."

The money will also help fund a cyber "supercenter" that Beardmore says will allow students to spend time on campus whenever it is convenient for them. Those who work full-time or have families can benefit from this new computer lab.

According to a 2008 report by the Babson Survey Research Group and the Sloan Consortium, more than 4.6 million students in the U.S. were enrolled in online courses.

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