Starting this fall, students will have the option to be concurrently enrolled at St. Clair County Community College (SC4) and Oakland University.
The third partnership in the “Community College to Oakland,” or “CC20” program, OU announced their agreement with St. Clair County Community College in late April.
Cheryl Rhodey, coordinator of the Macomb to Oakland partnership with Macomb Community College, is serving as the initial contact for the SC20 program.
“The university’s connection to Macomb is so enormous, a lot of the people that go up to SC4 travel from the border of Macomb, right where we are,” Rhodey said. “We feel that a lot of those students are coming our way anyway, especially with our location at Macomb Community College, so it was the next stop on the run.”
Students who sign up for the program will take classes at both institutions at the same time and will be considered full-time students by OU as long as they have 12 credits each semester between the two colleges.
“One thing that this program allows, which is unusual, is financial aid,” Rhodey said. “Students get full-time financial aid through Oakland University.”
Students in the program are also eligible for any of the student services offered at both SC4 and OU, which include advising, student organizations and OU housing.
Incoming freshmen must be accepted to OU first, which requires a 3.2 GPA or above.
Transfer OU or SC4 students are also eligible for the CS2O program. Transfer students must have less than 32 credits, cannot be a varsity athlete or be seeking a second degree or international students.
“The only problem I see happening is that students will think, ‘SC20, go to St. Clair then Oakland.’ And they’re St. Clair students with almost an associate’s degree thinking this is the program for them,” Rhodey said. “Really, this program is for students who have zero to 32 credits. As long as they’re signing up by the deadline and have less than 32 credits, they can sign up.”
She said the response from students so far, although it’s still early, has been excellent. Currently, she said about 20 applications have been turned in. Rhodey expects the program to do well, especially in the current economic state of the area.
“This is a huge opportunity for families in Oakland County and Macomb County to take advantage of higher education,” Rhodey said. “The idea is to give students a feel for the university, have them fall in love with it as many students do and have a stronger retention, meaning that students will have more of a feeling of a four-year university.”
The fall deadline for the program is July 1. For the winter 2011 semester, the deadline is October 1.
Upcoming information sessions on the program are scheduled for May 19, May 20, June 10 and June 23 from 5 – 7 p.m. at OU, SC4 or the University Center at Macomb Community College.
“The program isn’t for the benefit of Oakland,” Rhodey said. “The benefit of this program is for the student. It’s for the benefit of the students and their families. It’s a way to show that partnerships are the way of the future. We can create this cocoon to help our students get through their four year degree without being overwhelmed with their finances.”
More information is available at www.oakland.edu/SC20.