New agreement with area community college

For immediate release: Feb. 19, 2010

BLOOMSBURG — Students who earn an associate’s degree in early childhood education at one of three community colleges throughout the state will soon be able to seamlessly transition to Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania’s bachelor’s degree program.

Bloomsburg will sign program-to-program articulation agreements with Luzerne County Community College on Thursday, Feb. 25, and with Northampton Community College on Friday, Feb. 26. A similar agreement between Lehigh Carbon Community College and Bloomsburg University was formalized Wednesday, Feb. 3.

“The courses approved for articulation are not based on a course-to-course transfer, as is typically the case,” said Tom Fletcher, director of Corporate and Continuing Education at BU. “Instead, the agreement is a block transfer based on outcomes and competencies. Of the 60 transfer credits, a total of 31 credits in early childhood education are part of the overall agreement.”

These agreements are the first of their kind in Pennsylvania, said Fletcher, who added that the agreements are expected to serve as a model for the other 13 state universities in partnering with community colleges.

The agreements will apply to students who began their associate’s degree programs in fall 2009. The agreements stipulate that the community college student must graduate with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher and successfully complete the Praxis I examination. The final 60 credits for a bachelor’s degree in elementary education will be earned from Bloomsburg University.

Many students will be able to complete their bachelor’s degrees close to their hometown. In addition to Bloomsburg’s main campus, students will be able to take the classes needed to complete the bachelor’s programs at Luzerne County Community College’s main campus in Nanticoke and Lehigh Carbon County Community College’s Morgan Center in Tamaqua.

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 8,000 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in the colleges of Education, Business, Liberal Arts and Science and Technology.