Oregon Institute of Technology and Klamath Community College have formed a new partnership, one that will allow current Oregon Tech students who began their educational careers at KCC to be awarded degrees from the community college for work completed at Oregon Tech. The process, known as a “reverse transfer,” will enable students who transferred from KCC to Oregon Tech to receive an associate degree while continuing to work toward a bachelor’s degree.
Today’s students move frequently between two- and four-year postsecondary institutions in pursuit of education, training and a degree, with many students transferring into four-year universities before they complete an associate degree. This new partnership between Oregon Tech and KCC—which is the result of a statewide program that the two institutions helped pilot—recognizes students’ achievements with an associate degree after they have transferred to a four-year school and have accumulated the credits needed to fulfill the associate degree program requirements.
Students who are awarded an associate degree through reverse transfer benefit in a number of ways:
Recent studies show students are more likely to stay in school and complete a bachelor’s degree program if they earn an associate degree in the interim.
Graduates will have both an associate and a bachelor’s degree on their résumé, reflecting a broader, more accurate view of their skills and training. And for those who do not complete a bachelor’s degree but receive an associate degree with accrued credits, they have at least the one degree to help them as they seek employment.
If the associate degree is in a more technical, applied area than the bachelor’s degree, it may appeal to employers who are looking for applicants who understand both the hands-on and theoretical aspects of a given field.
Oregon Tech and KCC will benefit from the process as well. The community college can expect to see an increase in its completion rate, which will more accurately reflect the investment of time, resources and support that KCC has given to students who transfer prior to degree completion.
“This is a great opportunity for students to have all the hard work they put in at KCC better represented on their transcripts,” said Dr. Roberto Gutierrez, KCC President. “It is very important for KCC and Oregon Tech to work together to do everything we can to help our students and our community, and I believe this is just one of what will be many future partnerships between the two institutions.”
Meanwhile, Oregon Tech will likely benefit through greater student retention. Wendy Ivie, registrar at Oregon Tech stated, “Oregon Tech is excited to partner with KCC in this joint effort that will be a huge benefit to eligible students. This is win-win-win, for Oregon Tech, KCC and students.”
Statistics from recent work in this area show retention rates improve by 10 percent for those students who receive an associate degree through reverse transfer once they are at a four-year institution. Additionally, the initiative will allow both Oregon Tech and KCC help the State of Oregon achieve its 40-40-20 goals.
A signing ceremony to commemorate the partnership will take place Monday, December 10, at 10:00 a.m. in the KCC Boardroom. The ceremony is open to the media and public, and officials from both Oregon Tech and KCC will be on hand to answer questions about the program.
Qualifying students who want to take part in the reverse transfer program should contact KCC registrar John Duarte at (541)880-2282.