WMU, WCCCD add reverse transfer agreement to partnership

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KALAMAZOO—Wayne County Community College District and Western Michigan University have inked a new agreement that enables students to earn an associate degree by combining their WCCCD credits with those earned at WMU.

WMU President John M. Dunn and WCCCD Chancellor Curtis L. Ivery signed the agreement in separate long-distance ceremonies to note and celebrate the growing partnership between the two schools. The move follows an agreement signed in February that will allow WCCCD students to seamlessly transfer to WMU to complete their bachelor's degrees at a WCCCD Wayne County campus.

Under the terms of the new reverse transfer agreement, transfer students who have earned at least 15 credits at WCCCD can apply for an associate degree using the credits they earn at WMU. For students who leave WCCCD without earning enough credits for an associate degree, this will allow them to add an important credential to their resume. That credential is then available to them if they enter the workforce before completing their bachelor's degree.

The presidents of both schools say the agreement serves as an additional opportunity to solidify the already strong relationship between the two schools.

"We’re thrilled to further develop our partnership with WMU and provide additional options for students who are seeking a better life through higher education," said WCCCD Chancellor Curtis L. Ivery. "This partnership is an excellent example of the type of cooperation in higher education that directly benefits our students and increases their opportunities to complete a four-year degree."

"This reverse transfer agreement works to strengthen our joint commitment to students," Dunn said. "It is one more signal to our students that our focus is squarely on them and our intent, always, is to do whatever we can to maximize their future options."

This signing marks the ninth reverse transfer agreement WMU has signed. Two others are in process.

A growing partnership

In February, the two schools signed an agreement that will allow WMU to offer advanced classes at WCCCD's University Center in Harper Woods. The initial WMU offerings will be courses that lead to a bachelor's degree in university studies as part of a "two-plus-two" arrangement. The program will see WCCCD students complete their associate degree and then transfer seamlessly to WMU for the final two years of study. The WMU courses will be a combination of online and face-to-face courses.

Future plans call for even more opportunities for Southeast Michigan traditional and nontraditional students to enroll in WMU degree programs at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. WMU opened a regional location in Royal Oak in 2010 to serve as a base of operations for its Detroit-area activities.

Wayne County Community College District has five campuses and was established in 1967 to serve some 2.3 million people who live within the college's service district. WCCCD's University Center in Harper Woods is located at 19305 Vernier Road. WMU is offering courses there and also has office and advising space at WCCCD's Northwest Campus on West Outer Drive in Detroit.