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Montevallo comes to Chilton County

By Justin Averette

As I’ve mentioned in a few columns before, I graduated from the University of Montevallo.
So, naturally, I’m glad to see my alma mater expanding into Chilton County, via a new partnership with Jefferson State Community College.
Starting this fall, Jeff State students will be able to work toward a business degree in management from UM — right here in their own backyards.
More information about the program can be found on today’s front page of The Clanton Advertiser.
I heard William Rupp, dean of UM’s Michael E. Stephens College of Business, speak earlier this week about the program to members of the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce.
I was happy to see while the business classes will be offered through teleconferencing, Montevallo is still committed to making sure the new venture stays true to the school’s liberal arts education mission.
Looking back on my college days, I’m thankful for the small classes and UM professors who challenged students to think for themselves.
It didn’t always seem fun then, especially considering the fact that you had to be prepared for class every day. Because in a class of 15, chances are you would be called on sometime during any given lecture.
Like I said, I’m appreciative of my UM education. (Only wish they had a football team).
Chilton County already has a strong tie with Montevallo. Thousands of graduates from Montevallo live in  Chilton County. In fact, the county has the third highest number of UM alums, only behind Shelby County (where the school is located) and far more populous Jefferson County.
I look forward to that relationship strengthening in future years and wish Dean Rupp and Jeff State officials all the best.
– Justin Averette is managing editor of The North Chilton Advertiser.