The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

July 11, 2013

Opportunity

In providing southern West Virginia with higher education options, isn’t it refreshing that two local institutions saw themselves as potential partners in servicing their community, instead of rivals competing for potential students?

New River Community and Technical College students who graduate with an associate’s degree now have an easy transition to the University of Charleston if they choose to pursue a bachelor’s degree.

That’s an incredible feat that will undoubtedly enable more students to achieve their career goals.

UC and NRCTC officials signed an articulation agreement earlier this week that will enable New River students the ability to better plan their academic careers and minimize credit loss when they transfer to UC for a four-year degree.

This gives NRCTC students significantly more options after earning a two-year degree.

They’ll be just two more years from a bachelor’s degree. And some may even “move directly into one of UC’s graduate programs, such as the master of business administration and leadership, master of strategic leadership or master of forensic accounting,” according to UC officials.

UC President Dr. Ed Welch explained “This is a new and clear path for New River students to stretch their career goals and earning potential by transitioning easily into UC’s four-year programs after completing their associate’s degrees.”

This is just another promising step from UC, which rescued much of the former Mountain State University less than a year ago.

Our area was on the brink of losing a significant amount of higher education options about a year ago.

Yet instead, the steady growth of both UC-Beckley and NRCTC is giving our area hope for a brighter future, economically and educationally.

Our hope is that our young people, and many non-traditional students, will look into our local institutions when pursuing higher education.

Because we have some outstanding opportunities available here in our backyard.

And it seems to be getting better all the time, thanks to accomplishments such as this.

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