Program Overview

The Virtual Office Professional Certificate at Minnesota State Community and Technical College gives students the knowledge and skills they need to successfully work out of their own home office.  A Virtual Office Professional (VOP) is an independent proprietor who functions like a project manager, office administrator, and personal assistant to a variety of clients.  A VOP typically works out of a private home and offers many services to clients based on their skills and training such as word processing and spreadsheet work, presentation, public development, internet research, and data collection and input.  This certificate is made to supplement a person’s current work experience or education in order to help them become an independent contractor who serves clients in many different functions.  

Upon completion of the program students should be able to use a variety of computer programs, define the equipment needed for a home based office, formulate a business plan, and define marketing strategies in order to attract clients.  Students will also be able to demonstrate self-management and professional etiquette within the virtual environment.  The program requires 29 credit hours and includes courses on subjects such as spreadsheet applications, project management, office technology, and entrepreneurship.  Students can also take an elective in a separate field in order to broaden their education.

Virtual assistants provide administrative, technical, and other forms of assistance to clients, and there are many reasons why people hire these professionals as opposed to another employee.  VOPs are independent contractors and are responsible for their own taxes, insurance, and other benefits; they also provide their own equipment and space, saving clients the hassle of these logistical issues.  VOPs can support individuals, small businesses, or large companies to meet their specific needs, and the profession is growing every year.

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    Program Details

    Degree Level: Certificate

    Delivery Format: 100% Online

    Accelerated Degree:

    Accreditation & Licensing

    North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

    School Overview

    Minnesota State Community and Technical College (“M State”) is a two-year public institution of higher education, located in the city of Fergus Falls, Minnesota. Students can enroll in courses at M State’s campuses in Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Moorhead and Wadena. The Fergus Falls campus has a liberal arts focus, and about 75 percent of its students transfer to four-year colleges and universities after they attend M State.

    M State offers associate's degree and certificate programs. Many students at M State choose to complete the first two years of their bachelor's degree by earning a University Transfer degree at any of the or online through eCampus. M State’s eCampus offers over 25 programs and majors that can be completed entirely online.


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