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University Transfer Program sets enrollment record

Oct. 17, 2012
Enrollment in Nicolet College's University Transfer Liberal Arts program hit a new record high in 2011-12, with 448 Northwoods students enrolled. The program provides students with the first two years of a bachelor's degree. They then transfer their Nicolet credits to four-year colleges and universities.

"Students increasingly are seeing the great value and great education they can get in Nicolet's University Transfer Program," said Rose Prunty, Dean of the University Transfer Program, during a report she gave to the Nicolet College Board of Trustees during the Board's October meeting. "They recognize that it is a very good way to begin working on a bachelor's degree."

Since 2009, enrollment in the University Transfer Program is up 22 percent, she added. Along with being the largest academic program on campus, accounting for about one out of every three program students at Nicolet, it is also one of the oldest, as it was founded with the opening of college in 1968.

"Over the years thousands of Northwoods students have used the Transfer program as a stepping stone to higher levels of academic achievement," Prunty said. "It's encouraging to note that many have also returned to this area to apply their skills in a wide variety of fields, from education, to health, to natural resources and many others."

Today, Nicolet has in place more than 70 credit transfer agreements with numerous four-year colleges and universities. These include many private college and all institutions in the University of Wisconsin System, including UW-Madison, the system's flagship campus. The sweeping partnership that includes a guaranteed admission agreement with UW-Madison creates a smooth pathway for Northwoods students to study at a world-class university noted for its high admissions standards, she added.

Furthermore, under the Connections Program, students are enrolled at both Nicolet and UW-Madison and enjoy all of the benefits each institution has to offer. This includes receiving a UW-Madison ID that grants access to UW-Madison libraries, recreational facilities, ability to purchase tickets to UW-Madison athletic events at student rates, and access to cultural and social events on the UW-Madison campus. When students graduate from Nicolet's University Transfer Liberal Arts Program in good academic standing, they transition to UW-Madison where they are granted full junior status.

In the past five months alone Nicolet has received 230 requests from students to have their transcripts sent to a variety of post-secondary institutions, a necessary step in the transfer process. "This is a solid indication that many students are continuing their path to a bachelor's degree," Prunty said.

According to the data collected, the most popular destination campuses for Nicolet Transfer students are UW-Stevens Point, UW-Green Bay, and UW-Madison. Prunty also pointed out that the trend Nicolet's University Transfer Program is experiencing is being mirrored across the country.

Nearly half, or 45 percent, of all students who finished a four-year degree in 2010-11 had previously attended a two-year college, said Prunty, citing information from the National Student Clearinghouse.