You've seen Air Force Academy freshmen amass like Smurfs at Chapel Hills Mall on a Friday night. You've probably almost run over a longboarding Colorado College student on Nevada Avenue.
But could you tell me how DeVry students kick it on campus?
When was the last time you said to yourself, "Oh, those Remington kids"?
There are a number of higher education institutions that normally stay under the radar in Colorado Springs. It's easy to figure out the specialties of some (see: Fuller Theological Seminary, Colorado Technical University, etc.). Many of the others, though, rank as mysteries to the general Springs population.
Well, here's something you should know: Among the following nine schools, you can get a professional certificate, a Ph.D or any degree in between. And with flexible hours and affordable tuition, they may be worth a second — or first — look.
University of the Rockies
Who goes here: Bachelor's-degree holders with a decent GPA and sufficient coursework in psychology.
What you can learn: University of the Rockies offers a Master of Arts in psychology with specializations ranging from marriage and family therapy to organizational leadership. Doctoral psych degrees cover many of the same specializations, as well as a specialization in criminal psychology.
One perk: The university offers both online and classroom-based degree options.
Who goes here: "We're geared more toward the working adult," says director of admissions Markita McKamie, "with so many of our courses being online and at night." The average age here is 35, and the population is 65 percent male.
What can you learn: Bachelor's degrees tend toward business and high-tech, but also include graphic design. Grad degrees span business and public administration and numerous management fields: accounting and financial, human resources, information systems, network and communications and project management. Grad certificates generally fall into similar categories.
One perk: DeVry holds quarterly career fairs. The goal is not only to get post-college jobs for their students, but also part-time jobs during their years at DeVry.
CollegeAmerica at Colorado Springs
Who goes here: Anyone with a high school diploma or GED.
What you can learn: College-America offers Associate and Bachelor of Science degrees in the fields of health care, business, computers and graphic arts. Master's degrees in nursing administration, health care administration and business administration are available online through its affiliate, Stevens-Henager College.
One perk: Each student taking online courses receives a computer upon enrollment that he or she will own upon graduation.
Who goes here: A smattering of people preparing for entry-level jobs.
What can you learn: Everest offers vocation-based, short-term career training. Its certification programs touch the fields of accounting, business, computer information science, law and medicine. It follows up with an inside online employment search for graduates as well as job interview preparation, tutoring services and field trips to workplaces.
One perk: Everest campuses are close to public transportation routes and offer day care for children of students.
Who goes here: No fresh high-school grads; you need at least three years of professional experience to enroll at Regis' College for Professional Studies in Colorado Springs. It also heavily targets the military population, with tuition discounts for active military personnel and their spouses.
What you can learn: Four separate schools make up the College for Professional Studies: the School of Management, the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the School of Computer and Information Sciences, and the School of Education and Counseling. Each offers bachelor's and master's degrees; at regisuniversity.org/academic-programs.php, you can get a breakdown of online degree programs.
One perk: "Our career support services are for life," says Mindae Kadous, assistant director of marketing and communications.
National American University
Who goes here: Mostly professionals complementing their careers with further degrees.
What you can learn: At the local campus, 20 degree programs run the gamut, from a diploma in health care coding to associate's and bachelor's in business, medical and technical fields, all the way to master's degrees in business administration and management. Both online and on-site programs are available.
One perk: NAU does corporate training for local businesses and offers company tuition-assistance programs.
Who goes here: Anyone with a high school diploma.
What you can learn: You can get a medical assisting or pharmacy technician diploma here. The associate's and bachelor's degrees are in criminal justice, with an online option for the bachelor's.
One perk: Remington's career services include résumé assistance, professional development seminars, campus visits by local employers and even interview set-ups for jobs after graduation.
Who goes here: Working adults, including a good number of active military.
What you can learn: Troy University offers only a Master of Science in international relations and a Master of Science in management at its Springs location. Its online global campus, however, offers 19 program options, running from associate's to master's.
One perk: As a member of the GoArmyEd program, Troy has a campus at Fort Carson and offers certain classes in a unique weekend format to suit the needs of non-traditional students.
Who goes here: Working adults who already have a bachelor's degree, many of whom work in government contracting or with the military.
What you can learn: Webster's metropolitan campus on Tech Center Drive offers the usual master's degrees in business, IT, human resources and then a couple surprises: a master's in space systems operations management and a certificate in government contracting. Online courses expand the offerings to a master's in teaching and public relations, among other things.
One perk: "Our faculty has high academic standards," says community relations director Megan Rendon, "but must also be very active in their career field."
As a volunteer Coach and Mentor in my third year at The First Tee of…