Winona State University is providing new opportunities for students to keep learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Students at WSU can now catch up, keep up or get ahead this academic year with the university’s addition of a J Term. This interim semester will provide a variety of online classes during the WSU winter break from December 11, 2020 to January 10, 2021. J Term classes can help students who may be feeling behind or who are looking for an opportunity to fast track their time to graduation. These online courses are also open to outside students and adult learners looking to earn college credits or increase their knowledge.

Dr. Darrell Newton, the new Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Winona State, was instrumental in working with the WSU Cabinet to introduce a J Term to the university. “Besides J Term being an excellent way for students to complete certain classes as the spring semester approaches, it allows our faculty to offer even more courses online for those students who can’t make it to campus, or who choose to travel over the break,” he explains.

Faculty at WSU are ready to adapt their courses to this new, more concentrated J Term schedule and appreciate the additional value this focused experience can provide to students.

“The accelerated format allows for faculty like me to focus specifically and passionately on a particular policy area,” says Dr. Kara Lindaman, Professor of Political Science/Public Administration. “Our students, now more than ever, are excited to learn and make a difference for positive change in our communities. Thus, Winona State’s inaugural J Term helps me refocus these passions into a course on Health Care Policy & Politics, which is highly salient in the minds of our students and the American people.”

One of the added benefits of the J Term is that it allows students the opportunity to take a deep exploration of a subject outside of their normal course of study. Dr. Lindaman is excited that she will be teaching her politics and policy course to students from a variety of programs. “J Term truly brings the contextual learning environment to learn across disciplines and perspectives,” she says. “Without this interim J Term, this would not be a possibility during this academic year, and that would be an opportunity missed.”

Other classes scheduled for the J Term cover subject matters like accounting, macroeconomics, creative writing, nursing, climate change, management, and global studies. Registration is currently open.

To learn more about J Term or to register for a J Term course, please visit the WSU website.

If you have general questions about J Term, contact Heather Dieterman at For more information on WSU or to arrange press availability with campus representatives, contact Joe Hammes at

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