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KU recognized for excellence in community college transfer pathways

Thursday, March 16, 2017

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas has been recognized for excellence in community college transfer by a national honor society.

KU is one of 65 colleges and universities named to Phi Theta Kappa’s Transfer Honor Roll, which identifies the top four-year colleges and universities for creating dynamic pathways to support community college transfer.

Honor roll members were selected based on the following criteria:

  • institutional partnerships and community college collaboration
  • pre-transfer institutional support, including outreach, admissions and access
  • post-transfer student engagement and support
  • community college data tracking and institutional priorities
  • transfer innovations

KU’s 2016 freshman class included 1,136 transfer students, a 2.1 percent increase over the previous year’s transfer total.

“The University of Kansas continues to be an attractive option for transfer students because of our nationally ranked academic programs and the life-changing opportunities we offer our community of scholars,” said David Cook, vice chancellor of the KU Edwards Campus. “In addition, we continue to develop partnerships and programs that make it easier for students to begin their academic career at a community college before transferring to KU to complete their studies and earn their degrees. We are proud of our work in this area and will continue to do all we can to make KU an option for talented transfer students.”

A recent example of an innovation to serve transfer students is the degree partnership program KU developed with Johnson County Community College. Launched in 2015, the program enables students to earn both an associate’s degree from JCCC and a bachelor’s degree from KU. The program allows students to be fully admitted at both institutions at the same time. Students enroll in core classes at JCCC and, at the same time, they can take upper-level, program-specific courses at KU’s Lawrence or Edwards campus.

“The program allows students to take courses at each institution when it’s best for the student, rather than the traditional, more rigid, 2+2 model,” said Stuart Day, senior vice provost for academic affairs. “We designed this to focus on students’ needs.”

KU’s efforts to recruit and serve transfer students align with the Kansas Board of Regents systemwide emphasis on transfer and articulation, which is designed to better serve students and families and, ultimately, provide more graduates for the Kansas workforce.

“The seamless transition of students among Kansas educational institutions is crucial to the success of the system and, more broadly, to our ability to provide the Kansas economy with skilled workers,” said Regent Helen Van Etten, chair of the Board Academic Affairs Standing Committee. “I applaud the University of Kansas for excellence in community college transfer and for being named to Phi Theta Kappa’s Transfer Honor Roll.”

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