PCC expands partnership with four-year colleges

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Piedmont Community College partnered with an accredited online university to ease the process for graduates to pursue a bachelor’s degree.

WGU North Carolina, an affiliate of national online nonprofit Western Governors University, signed the memorandum of understanding with PCC.

According to WGU North Carolina’s liaison to community colleges Dr. Jason Caldwell, a formal signing ceremony will be next Tuesday.

This MOU establishes the basis under which all associate degrees at PCC transfer to WGU, making it easier and less costly for students to earn their four-year degrees.

PCC has multiple articulation agreements like the one with WGU, including with UNC Greensboro and Averett University for students to have options in order to continue their academic career.

“We are very pleased with having another avenue for our students to be successful,” said PCC’s Chief Academic Officer Barbara Buchanan.

WGU offers more than 60 undergraduate and graduate degrees in business, including finance and human resources, information technology, education and healthcare including nursing.

PCC graduates, faculty and staff will have access to tuition discounts and scholarship funds.

They are expected to receive a 5 percent discount on WGU’s tuition, estimated at $3,225 per six-month term for most undergraduate programs. Students will also be eligible to apply for scholarships through the WGU Community College Partnerships Scholarship program.

“Specifically to PCC because they are a partner of ours, we will have a WGU Community College Partnership Scholarship Program, which is available to anyone who completes their program at PCC to apply for, and those scholarships are about $2,000 awarded over four terms, at about $500 a term,” said Catherine Truitt, Chancellor of WGU North Carolina.

It is expected that PCC graduates will not need to repeat any coursework toward a bachelor’s degree through PCC.

“We want our students to finish their course or their degree program before applying to us and then they will be accepted,” said Truitt.

WGU has rolling admission, meaning students can apply anytime but applications for PCC graduates will open in the fall.

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