On April 8 Rutgers University-Newark (RU-N) and Hudson County Community College (HCCC) in Jersey City signed a letter of intent that paves the way for both smoother student transfers between the two institutions and greater academic success for the transferees.
RU-N Chancellor Nancy Cantor and HCCC President Glen Gabert signed the letter promising to create articulation agreements between the two schools that will “facilitate the seamless transfer of HCCC students who complete an associate degree at HCCC .... with full junior status at RU-N.” Toward this end, the institutions will develop processes to create pathways to academic success for the transfer students, so they can successfully complete their BA or BS degrees in two years. These procedures will include mapping of curriculum for course-by-course transfer, and the aligning of course content and sequencing of courses, to embody a “full faith and credit” principle for credits taken within the degree area. Prospective transfer students also would receive academic advisement and financial aid counseling, as well as “continued support” after transferring to RU-N.
HCCC freshmen will begin benefitting from some of the new procedures during the 2015-2016 academic year as the colleges work together to implement the improvements.
RU-N Chancellor Nancy Cantor sees multiple and mutual goals to be achieved in this more expansive relationship with HCCC. “This exciting partnership will significantly broaden and strengthen educational pathways between our two institutions. Smoothing transitions through articulation agreements and employing innovative financial aid and mutual degree-completion mechanisms reflects a key element of our strategic plan priority to invest in anchor institution collaborations by increasing access to and affordability of earning an RU-N degree for students in our region. It also speaks directly to our national priority to increase opportunities for earning a college degree.”
Dr. Gabert stated, “Over the years, we have worked together with Rutgers University ‒Newark to provide HCCC students with ways of attaining a baccalaureate degree that will lead to a more secure future. This dual admission agreement will make it easier for our students to attain their bachelor’s degrees in art, biology, business, computer arts, marketing, supply chain management, criminal justice, English, environmental science, public and nonprofit administration, and theater.”
The letter of intent and the planned new agreements will build upon the existing relationship between the two institutions, which, the letter notes, already have a “have a long tradition of partnerships and collaborations.”
The letter of intent also calls for:
• Strengthening the academic and support partnership between RU-N and HCCC, including an exploration of possibilities for joint fundraising for scholarship support for HCCC students transferring to RU-N;
• Facilitating the “reverse transfer” of credit from RU-N to HCCC for HCCC students who choose to transfer to Rutgers from HCCC prior to completing their associate degree. The courses they take at RU-N would also count toward their associate’s at HCCC, so these students would be awarded an associate degree from HCCC once they complete the number of credits required by HCCC for the AA or AS. Thus, even if a transfer student had to leave RU-N before completing the baccalaureate, the student would still have an associate’s degree.
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