On Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, East Georgia State College signed a new Memorandum of Understanding with Augusta University (AU) to continue the academic partnership between the institutions. EGSC President Dr. Bob Boehmer and AU President Dr. Brooks Keel met to move forward with the agreement that has allowed both institutions to collaboratively serve area students since 2013.
This agreement began as a way to serve students whose access to college may have been limited by the consolidation of the Medical College of Georgia and Augusta State University. East Georgia State College stepped in at that time to serve these students and ensure their successful futures. As a result of this partnership, EGSC students take classes on AU’s Summerville campus and are able to enjoy the best of both worlds—the small classes and low tuition of EGSC and the wide array of student services of AU.
“Augusta University and EGSC share the common mission of helping students achieve their academic goals, and I am pleased this partnership continues to provide students access and opportunities to help them succeed no matter where they start in their educational journey,” said Dr. Keel.
Since its inception in 2013, EGSC – Augusta has grown from 94 students to over 500, with recent enrollment projections expecting that number to rise over 800 by 2021. Over the course of the partnership, 51 students who have attended EGSC – Augusta have gone on to attend and graduate from Augusta University.
The nine full-time and 11 part-time faculty at EGSC – Augusta offer a full range of courses, from College Algebra and Public Speaking to Principles of Macro and Microeconomics. EGSC – Augusta students are also able to take classes at AU, which include subjects such as Tai Chi, Yoga and participation in the University Singers, as well as Drawing and Elementary French.
Ensuring student success is at the heart of all EGSC does, and this partnership allows students to begin earning their degree at EGSC in Augusta at an affordable price while having access to the amenities and benefits of a larger institution. Students pay EGSC’s tuition rates and AU’s student fees and have access to the same amenities as Augusta University students, including living in AU’s student housing at University Village. After successful completion of 30 semester hours, students transfer to AU easily from EGSC.
Another exciting component of EGSC and AU’s partnership is the reverse transfer initiative. Part of Governor Deal’s Complete College Georgia, this initiative allows students enrolled in Augusta University who have earned enough credits to qualify them for an associate degree to submit their transcripts to EGSC for evaluation. If all of the necessary course requirements are met, these students are awarded an associates degree, which is then noted on their AU transcript.
Reverse transfer is a process that allows a student who completed courses at EGSC and transferred to another USG senior institution to combine college credits from both institutions and apply them toward an associate degree from EGSC.
“Some students complete substantial coursework at EGSC – Augusta and then move on to Augusta University before meeting the requirements for an EGSC associate degree,” said Dr. Boehmer. “Reverse transfer gives the seamless pathway from EGSC to AU one more valuable attribute. Upon completing the required courses at AU, that student may receive their EGSC associate degree. When that student reaches the end of their undergraduate journey, they will have earned two degrees with economic value—an EGSC associate degree and an AU bachelor degree.”
Director Nick Kelch manages the EGSC – Augusta Campus and oversight of external campuses at EGSC – Augusta and EGSC – Statesboro is overseen by Caroline Joyner. EGSC’s successful relationship with AU is facilitated by AU liaison Dr. Adam Wyatt, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Student Success.