Local Colleges Collaborate to Provide More Access to Degree Program
LONGMEADOW, MA— In a joint press conference on Wednesday, May 30, Bay Path College and Holyoke Community College announced an online articulation agreement that will give HCC students increased access to an affordable four-year degree.
The online agreement guarantees that students holding an associate in arts degree from Holyoke Community College can transfer a minimum of 61 credits toward a Bachelor of Arts degree in Leadership and Organizational Studies from Bay Path College. The four-year degree would be accomplished through Bay Path’s new Online Degree Completion Program for Women.
Both colleges view the online agreement as a way to increase the number of local students who complete a Bachelor’s degree and decrease the overall cost of a four-year degree from a private institution.
“We are very excited to be partnering with Bay Path to increase transfer opportunities for HCC students,” said William F. Messner, President of Holyoke Community College. “The flexibility of online education in particular makes it possible for those who are juggling work and family responsibilities to pursue a degree. We know this will make continued education more accessible for many of our students.”
“Many women can find it difficult to advance in their careers and in their lives at a certain point because they lack a four-year degree. This agreement is particularly exciting because it gives women access to a flexible, online degree completion program that allows them to earn a BA without putting the rest of their life on hold,” explained Dr. Carol Leary, President of Bay Path College.
In addition to the academic component, the Online Degree Completion Program incorporates other program aspects that help to distinguish women as well-rounded individuals and thoughtful leaders: financial literacy, ethical behavior, health and wellness, and community participation.
The Online Degree Completion Program at Bay Path College also allows students to earn additional college credit through a Prior Learning Assessment process. Students must complete a required course to document and verify college level knowledge and skills gained from life experiences including employment, volunteer service, travel, hobbies and civic activities.
“Prior Learning Assessment is another way that adult learners can keep down the cost of their degree. Earning college credit for knowledge and skills you have learned through your career, can significantly shorten the length of time and the number of classes you need in order to graduate,” said Dr. Gina Joseph-Collins, Founding Dean, School of Adult and Professional Studies. “All courses are also taught by educator coaches, who are trained to help students develop their own success plans. This dedicated support is very helpful in an online environment.”
The articulation agreement between the schools will take effect immediately and will remain in place for a minimum of three years.
Bay Path—The New American Women’s College for the 21st Century—is a four-year private college with an enrollment of over 2300 students at its Longmeadow campus, and satellite campuses in Sturbridge/Charlton (MA) and Burlington (MA). The College offers undergraduate degrees for women; graduate degrees for men and women; the Online Degree Completion Program for Women: and Bay Path Online. Through its programs and campuses, the College is united in its mission to propel students into careers that not only change lives, but also impact the well-being of all of us.
Holyoke Community College is the Commonwealth’s oldest community college, serving more than 12,500 students annually in credit and noncredit programs and courses. The college has the highest transfer rate of any community college statewide, holding articulation agreements with more than 27 colleges and universities. Recognized for its Honors Program, distance learning curriculum, learning communities, and service to students, HCC also offers business development opportunities through the Kittredge Center for Business and Workforce Development. Please visit us on the web at www.hcc.edu
Kathy Wroblewski, Director of Communications, Bay Path College
413.565.1233 (Cell 413.387.9764) or email@example.com
JoAnne L. Rome, Director of Marketing and Strategic Communications, Holyoke Community College
413.552.2183 or firstname.lastname@example.org