Transfer programs are at the heart of what community colleges do | KCTCS

Transfer programs are at the heart of what community colleges do

by Paul Czarapata, KCTCS President - November 3, 2021

We sometimes take for granted that people understand our transfer mission, which is that students come here for an associate degree and then transfer to four-year university. But there may be some aspects of the transfer mission that are not well known or misunderstood.

Most people know that community college tuition is less than that of public and private universities. How much less? On average, students can save more than $30,000 by taking their first two years at a KCTCS college. Additionally, research shows community college students do as well or better than those who take their first two years at a university.

Although nationally you might hear reports about universities not accepting community college credits, that’s rare in Kentucky. Legislation passed several years ago by Kentucky’s General Assembly makes transferring as seamless as possible for our students.

For the best transfer experience, students should work with an advisor beginning in their first semester. An advisor can guide students along the way and make sure they are choosing the right courses. An advisor helps students understand financial aid availability, too. For example, some of our four-year partners offer transfer scholarships but students may not be aware of those opportunities.

For those who want to earn a bachelor’s degree but can’t move to a university town, many of our colleges have options for four-year degrees through universities that have locations on our campuses. These locations offer specific classes or programs.

At three of our colleges, you’ll find multiple on-campus options. Hazard Community and Technical College has the University Center of the Mountains, Somerset Community College offers the University Center of Southern Kentucky and Elizabethtown Community and Technical College will soon have a University Center as well. In these three examples, multiple universities have faculty on the local community college campus and offer several bachelor’s degree programs.

We talk a lot about our technical programs, and they are extremely important to KCTCS and the Kentuckians we serve, especially now when most careers require additional training or certification after high school. Some people refer to these programs as workforce training, but I view all of our programs as workforce training. No matter what program you chose, you are preparing for a career, and make no mistake about it, our transfer programs are just as important as the technical ones.

At KCTCS, we have a three-pronged mission:

All are equally important in helping us reach our ultimate goal of improving the lives and employability of Kentuckians. To date, we have done that for one million and counting.

To learn more about how to transfer, visit our transfer website.

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