Central Michigan University signed a reverse transfer agreement with Mid Michigan Community College Monday that will make it easier for students to earn an associate’s degree.
Registrar Karen Hutslar said any student who has earned at least 12 credit hours at MMCC can finish their remaining credit hours while at CMU for an associate’s degree from MMCC.
CMU will notify students who transfer from MMCC about the reverse transfer agreement, and once students have earned 70 credit hours, they will be notified again, Hutslar said. Students will be able to send a free copy of their CMU transcript along with a form to MMCC to receive their associate’s degree.
A committee of officials from both institutions has worked together for over a year to set up the reverse transfer agreement, Hutslar said. CMU President George Ross and MMCC President Carol A. Churchill signed the formal agreement into effect on Monday.
Hutslar said the reverse transfer agreement with MMCC is the first of its kind for CMU, and the university will be working with other community colleges as well. She said CMU is in the process of finalizing programs with Delta College and Montcalm Community College.
The reverse transfer agreement is a way to help students earn another degree even if they are working toward a bachelor’s degree at CMU, Hutslar said.
“There’s no such thing as too many degrees,” she said.
Scott Mertes, associate dean of student and academic support services for MMCC, said because of the college’s proximity to CMU, a lot of students transfer without getting a degree from MMCC. If, for whatever reason, the students then drop out of CMU, they have no degree, he said.
Mertes said the reverse transfer agreement makes it easier for students to transfer their credits in order to receive a degree they might not have known they were eligible for.
“It helps those students get an associate’s degree that they did earn but didn’t know they had access to,” he said.
The focus of the program is on helping students, Hutslar said.
“The main thing is not to benefit CMU,” she said. “The main thing is to benefit our students.”
Mertes said MMCC and CMU share a lot of students, whether they start at MMCC and transfer to CMU, start at CMU and transfer to MMCC or are cross-enrolled.
“We’re all in the business of serving students,” he said.
Mertes said MMCC hopes they will be able to identify which students are eligible for the program by the end of the fall semester. He said he doesn’t know how many students will benefit from the program, but hundreds of students transfer from MMCC to CMU every semester or cross-enroll.
“It’s too soon to tell how many students are going to take advantage of the opportunity,” he said. “There is a potential for hundreds.”
CMU is working on how to best identify and notify students about this program, Hutslar said.
“The hope is that we already might have students that qualify either this semester or next semester,” she said.
According to a Monday release from CMU, Rep. Kevin Cotter, R—Mich., was awarded the first associate’s degree under the new agreement between CMU and MMCC. He earned 45 credits at MMCC before transferring to CMU.
Mertes said MMCC is excited to develop its partnership with CMU through the reverse transfer agreement.
“We already have a strong relationship, and this takes our relationship one step further,” he said.