It sounds like the Functional Content was not loaded. Now, I do not know for sure, if the educational version (there are actually two, slightly different "educational" versions), ships with and installs the Functional Content. I think that John T. Smith knows all about what is included in each version, and especially the educational versions. Maybe he can instruct, whether something is omitted by the version.
Otherwise, the IT department might have just chosen to not install that material, and I would check with them.
In the meantime, one can recreate Lower Thirds, as they wish, with Titler. Then, you can Save that as a Template (PTRL format), for use in other Projects.
I also create many in PS, but that means that they are PSD files (graphic images), and need to be edited in PS, as Titler will not edit those, but you can still do the background Lower Thirds, and then use Titler to add/change/edit Text (and Shapes, if necessary), as overlays.
The copy I have was not installed by IT, I had it as a trial version and then when I received an activation code i simply updated it to the full version. Could this have been a reason why they arent showing up?
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For reliable operation, completely remove the trial and use Clean Script two or three times, rebooting in between runs and then install the full version and update to 5.03.
The Adobe KB Article, that Ann linked to, should get your Functional Content.
As there is no trial for Encore, I would guess that with the Functional Content, it is not loaded for either program. Maybe Dennis or Todd can confirm this for sure.
Thanks to Ann for that link.