Leaders of five Michigan higher education institutions met recently to sign agreements that will make it easier for students to earn a critical credential that will help them throughout their careers.
The presidents of four community colleges, including Dr. Dennis Bona of Kellogg Community College, visited the campus of Western Michigan University on Dec. 4 to sign reverse transfer agreements that will allow students to begin their studies at the community college level, transfer to WMU and earn an associate degree using WMU credits.
The agreements are tailored to each institution, but they generally allow a student who has earned at least 30 credits at their community college to apply as many as 30 WMU credits toward completing an associate degree, which typically requires around 60 credits.
Bona called the initiative an easy one to support.
“Anything that is as student-centered as this is something we’re going to get behind,” Bona said. “Right now, students are leaving an important credential on the table, and this agreement addresses that in a way that is focused squarely on our students’ needs.”
Combined, the four community colleges represented at the Dec. 4 signing send about 300 transfer students to WMU each fall. Many transfer students have completed their associate degree requirements before they transfer, but many have not. WMU has been working with its community college partners to find ways to make those transfer transitions more seamless.
According to WMU Provost Timothy Greene, reverse transfer agreements also are a way to honor the college choices and paths students follow and ensure they receive the maximum benefit from their time at their community college and at WMU.
“We want them to have the flexibility of entering the job market whenever they wish and to have a resume that reflects the community college credentials they’ve earned as they work to complete a four-year degree,” Greene said. “This is about our institutions showing our joint commitment to our students and their success.”
In addition to KCC, other community colleges represented at the Dec. 4 signing were Glen Oaks Community College, Lake Michigan College and Lansing Community College.
For more news about Kellogg Community College, view our latest press releases online at daily.kellogg.edu/category/press-releases.