Community Colleges and Universities See Advantages of Working Together


  Community Colleges around the state are joining forces with universities and 4-year colleges to form bonds that will help students continue their education past an associate’s degree.

Last week Mountwest Community and Technical College in Huntington signed an articulation agreement with the College of Arts and Media at Marshall. More specifically the agreement pertains to students in journalism fields such as advertising, public relations, online journalism and radio/television production and management. The 2+2 agreement allows students in those fields at Mountwest to transfer their associate’s degree credits directly to the Marshall school of journalism where they can then work toward their bachelor’s degree.

The idea isn’t new for schools throughout the state. Agreements like West Virginia Northern Community and Technical Colleges 2+2 agreement in Social work with West Virginia University, or Southern West Virginia Community and Technical Colleges agreement with Concord University in Elementary Education are becoming the norm. Jim Skidmore is the Chancellor for West Virginia Community and Technical Colleges.

“I don’t think there should be any doors closed for students to pursue additional higher education, so these types of agreements just make it possible to do that,” Skidmore said.

Skidmore said these agreements are paramount to the success of the students who have a need to start at Community and Technical colleges around the state.

"It promotes the relationships and partnerships with them and when they work out these partnerships it's a win-win for everybody," Skidmore said.

“It promotes the relationships and partnerships with them and when they work out these partnerships it’s a win-win for everybody,” Skidmore said.

Marshall University President Stephen Kopp understands the need for these agreements.

“We have three of them right now in the college of business, this adds another one and we’re looking at adding others as we go along, they’re a good partner,” Kopp said.

Keith Cotroneo is President of Mountwest Community and Technical College. He said agreements like these are key for their ability to help students continue their education past Mountwest.

“These program specific pathways arm them with the information that they need to take the right courses and not stumble around and get confused as they move forward during the degree program,” Cotroneo said.

According to the official agreement, the deans of both programs will continually monitor the curriculum at both institutions to ensure consistency and program quality.