Skip to main content

Customizable online degree prepares students for the modern workplace

Makayla Tolman sitting on bench

When Makayla Tolman learned about the College of Innovation and Design’s new digital innovation and design online degree program, she couldn’t believe it was real.

“I thought, ‘This is the best thing ever. This is exactly what I wanted,’” said Tolman, who grew up in Burley, Idaho, transferred to Boise State from Brigham Young University Provo and is set to graduate in fall 2023 with her online degree.

Students in the program, which launched in spring 2022, learn skills like managing and using new digital technologies, communication and design thinking — or taking a user-centered approach to problem-solving in fields like technology, business, education and health care.

“We are looking at the future of education and how we can meet the demands of students, reaching areas of Idaho that might not have access to this kind of technology-focused, future-focused degree,” said Program Launch Director dawn shepherd.

Throughout their time in the program, students earn certificates, choosing areas that interest them — cyber operations, data analysis and project management to name a few. The program will soon add certificates in esports and business.

“One goal is to have students earn a credential in their first year, one that can help them find a job, advance at their current company or use to enhance their small business,” shepherd said.

Tolman has a graphic design internship through Boise State Athletics. She’s interested in social media planning and content. Her favorite classes towards her degree have been in the Society for Ideas in the College of Innovation Design, a creative program that offers three certificates.

“In these classes, professors focus on what you’re trying to accomplish, and what you learn through the process,” Tolman said. “I’ve told my advisor that everyone at Boise State should take these classes.”