NORMAL -- Heartland Community College and Eastern Illinois University now have a reverse transfer agreement. President Rob Widmer of Heartland and Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Blair Lord of Eastern signed the agreement Tuesday, May 19.
Reverse transfer is for students who elect to transfer from a community college to a baccalaureate degree-granting institution prior to completing their associate degree. Most likely, these students will complete the course work needed for their associate degree after transferring to the four-year institution. Reverse transfer agreements allow those transfer students to receive the degree they have earned.
Under Heartland and EIU’s agreement, EIU’s registrar will contact university students who have earned 30 or more hours from Heartland but who have not been awarded a degree. EIU will offer to transmit each student’s transcripts to Heartland at the end of each semester, at no cost to the student. Heartland will then conduct a degree audit. If the student has met the requirements for the associate degree, HCC’s staff will award the degree, also at no cost to the student.
Rick Pearce, Heartland’s vice president of learning and student success, said the agreement is a huge benefit to students.
“The associate degree is often viewed as the first two years of earning a bachelor’s degree,” Pearce said. “But life happens and sometimes (students) may not complete their bachelor’s degree when they planned. This gives them the security in knowing they have something to show when they go out into the workforce.”
Pearce also noted that once a student completes one degree, they are more than likely to complete the second.
This is Heartland’s first reverse transfer agreement. Eastern has an additional agreement with Lake Land Community College in Mattoon. Once a “track record” is established, Heartland will seek agreements with other universities.
Submitted by: Becky Gropp, email@example.com; 309-268-8186