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Both Marshalltown and Ellsworth Community Colleges have partnered with the University of Iowa to formalize an agreement that allows their students to earn a four-year degree without leaving central Iowa.
UI President Sally Mason and Iowa Valley Chancellor Chris Duree will sign the agreement at a ceremony at 11 a.m. Monday, March 26, in the Iowa Valley Continuing Education Center, Room 608, on the Marshalltown campus. A public reception will follow the signing.
Four degrees will be offered online including the Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS), the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS), the Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), and the RN-Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).
“The combination of two and four year degrees, combined with relevant work experience, leads to an ideal career path. Students who are able to continue their degrees online may also remain in the workforce locally,” says Chet Rzonca, associate provost and dean of the UI Division of Continuing Education.
Duree agrees that this is a beneficial partnership.
“We are pleased to enter into this new agreement with the UI, which will be a huge benefit to our MCC and ECC students who cannot afford to relocate to Iowa City to complete their bachelor’s degrees,” Duree says.
He adds that approximately 80 percent of their students start their academic careers at MCC and ECC and then transfer the credits to complete a bachelor’s degree or higher at a four-year institution.
“For some of our students with work and family ties to the local community, completing the bachelor’s degree coursework so far away from home is either difficult or impossible,” Duree says. “Having the UI online degree programs available locally will be an incredible asset to our students and to our communities in general.”
Mason says the partnership benefits many citizens across the state.
“This agreement puts our two institutions at the forefront of educational innovation and opens up worlds of possibility for many of our state’s citizens,” Mason says. “It is a model for the ways in which public higher education institutions across our state can work together to provide the best opportunities possible for Iowans.”
This is the 14th such partnership that the UI has created with community college districts across the state.