UW, Community Colleges Plan ‘Universal 2-Plus-2’ Agreements

For the past five years, students in many popular degree programs at Wyoming community colleges have been able to seamlessly transfer to the University of Wyoming as a result of dozens of “2-plus-2” articulation agreements between academic departments of UW and the institutions.

That collaboration is taking another step forward, with the aim of providing all community college students with the assurance that courses they’re taking will meet requirements for bachelor’s degrees at the university.

UW and the state’s seven community colleges have announced plans for a “universal 2-plus-2” partnership, setting the stage for UW agreements with each college, rather than the department-by-department approach. The agreements will outline the transfer assurances for all students, regardless of the individual academic discipline.

While the new university and college-level agreements are being developed, all participating colleges pledge to honor current program-level articulation agreements and provide continuity of service to the students of Wyoming. The target for completion of the new agreements is the end of the current calendar year.

“We’re excited to take this next step with our community college partners to provide a transfer experience that is as seamless as possible for students from the colleges to the university,” UW President Ed Seidel said. “We all are committed to helping the state achieve its educational attainment objectives to help assure a bright economic future, and the universal 2-plus-2 agreements will certainly help in that effort.”

“The articulation universal memorandum of understanding (MOU) between UW and the community colleges is the next step in broadening articulation for student retention and completion,” Sandy Caldwell, executive director of the Wyoming Community College Commission said. “This effort signifies a solid commitment and effort to achieve the formally adopted Wyoming Post-secondary Attainment Plan and is in alignment with the efforts related to the student transfer success effort (common transcript legislation); common course numbering system; and Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System. The UW and community college presidents are to be commended for taking this proactive step to support students and the state of Wyoming.”

Beginning in 2014, dozens of program-level articulation agreements have been struck between UW and individual community colleges as part of a concerted statewide effort to ease the transition for students moving from community colleges to UW. The new enhanced collaboration is a further commitment by Wyoming’s higher education institutions to provide clear four-year pathways to bachelor’s degrees for the state’s students.

“This MOU is a momentous occasion for the university and the community colleges. Transfer students, for generations to come, will benefit from the planning and cooperation that have gone into this document,” Stefani Hicswa, president of Northwest College in Powell said. “I appreciate President Seidel’s leadership in making this happen.”

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