Grand Valley and MCC make transfer easier on students
Anyone who has ever tried to transfer college credit knows it can be a hassle. But with the new agreement between Grand Valley State University and Montcalm Community College, the process may become a little less painful for some students.
“We are excited about this partnership with Montcalm Community College and the value of this agreement for students,” said GVSU President Thomas J. Haas in an article written by GVSU News and Information. Haas signed the agreement with MCC President Robert C. Ferrentino on Sept. 6 to make the move from a community college to a university less troublesome.
The arrangement known as a reverse transfer agreement gives MCC students the opportunity to continue their education at GVSU or to put the credits they have already obtained at MCC toward GVSU programs.
“We are trying to serve the population who never intended to stay a full two years, those who plan to transfer to attend a 4-year institution,” said Lynn Blue, vice provost and dean of Academic Services. The goal of the reverse transfer agreement is not to discourage community colleges or to push students into choosing GVSU, but to partner with community college programs for easier transitions.
“We want the transfer population to know that Grand Valley is a transfer-friendly institution that provides fair articulation of their credits when they are ready to transfer,” Blue said.
This isn’t the first reverse transfer agreement GVSU has signed. The first came in 2011 with Grand Rapids Community College and then continued with similar agreements with Muskegon Community College, Macomb Community College and now with Montcalm Community College.
“We will partner this way with any community college in the state (of Michigan),” GVSU Provost Gayle Davis said.
Plans are already in the works to set up transfer agreements with other Michigan community colleges, and GVSU could potentially make arrangements with, “as many as are interested,” she said.
It does take time, though, to plan and negotiate agreements with other institutions.
“Each college needs to work the agreement through their own governance system and establish their specific academic criteria,” Blue said about the pre-planning that goes on before the official signing of the agreement. “It takes a bit of time to (work out) the details of their systems.”
The agreements between GVSU and transfer-friendly colleges allows students to be more flexible with when and where they are able to take their needed classes.
“Students can earn credential by completing coursework elsewhere, or if they so choose, transfer Grand Valley credit to their community college and pick up a course or two over the summer,” Blue said. “This is a true benefit to the students that begin at a community college and transfer before receiving their degrees.”
With the new reverse transfer agreement in place between GVSU and MCC, the hassle of transferring hours and credits will diminish, allowing new students to settle peacefully into their new home at GVSU.