Westchester Community College (WCC) and The College of New Rochelle announced a formal agreement last week that enhances and speeds the process for students who have earned their associate’s degree to transfer to the four-year college.
The articulation agreement signed last Wednesday will allow WCC students to gain entry to The College of New Rochelle’s School of Arts and Sciences with a minimum of 60 credits and be accepted with junior class status. It is expected that the two colleges will also develop a similar pathway to The College of New Rochelle’s nursing and health care programs in the future.
Transferring students who meet the eligibility requirements will also receive a financial break, an annual scholarship equal to $10,000 for two years that will be credited against The College of New Rochelle’s standard tuition for full-time students.
WCC President Belinda Miles said increasing opportunities to higher education is part of the mission that both colleges share. Students, particularly those who are the first in their family attending college, often are overwhelmed by not only the admissions process but by sticker shock.
“These types of opportunity gives them hope,” Miles said. “It instills in them maybe I can do that, and by having that relationship in the first two years, it gives us the opportunity to say yes you can. We will help you and we are partnering with the organizations that are ready to receive you.”
Students who attend classes at WCC’s main campus in Valhalla as well as any of the satellite locations scattered throughout the county can take advantage of the transfer program, said Dr. Peggy Bradford, the college’s interim vice president of academic affairs. They can take one of 22 bachelor degree programs at The College of New Rochelle, she said.
WCC graduates interested in enrolling may do so at any time. The agreement and the transfer arrangement will go into effect for the 2016-17 academic year.
Other highlights of the agreement include credits earned that do not count toward a student’s major will be counted as elective credits for the bachelor’s degree. Furthermore, one transfer student each year will receive a full-tuition scholarship at The College of New Rochelle. Eligible students, nominated by WCC, must have completed their associate degree and have a grade point average of at least 3.5.
Judith Huntington, president of The College of New Rochelle, said both schools are proud of the new partnership. She said she met with Miles once she took over as WCC president a little more than a year ago and discussed ways to bring greater higher education opportunities to each of their campuses.
“It really responds to several national higher education agenda imperatives in a way that is practical, responsible and respectful,” Huntington said. “It makes higher education accessible, affordable and seamlessly efficient.”
More than 13,000 students are currently enrolled at Westchester Community College. The College of New Rochelle, established in 1904, is ranked by U.S. News and World Report in the top tier among regional universities in the north and is among the top 10 in New York and the top 100 in the nation among Washington Monthly’s Master’s Universities.