Missouri's Community Colleges and WGU Missouri Announce Landmark Agreement - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Missouri's Community Colleges and WGU Missouri Announce Landmark Agreement

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Partnership provides community college graduates with tuition discounts and seamless transfer to state-endorsed online university

LAKE OZARK, Mo., July 23, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Graduates of community colleges around Missouri can now receive a 5 percent tuition discount and seamless transfer to WGU Missouri under an agreement with the Missouri Community College Association (MCCA). WGU Missouri will also provide a scholarship of up to $2,000 for select graduates of MCCA colleges.

Missouri community college leaders gather with WGU Missouri chancellor Angie Besendorfer (center) to announce a statewide agreement.

"WGU Missouri and Missouri's community colleges are natural partners, striving to provide higher education for Missouri residents," said WGU Missouri Chancellor Angie Besendorfer. "Because WGU focuses on affordability and flexibility for working adults, we believe this agreement will make it viable for more students who begin in community colleges to complete their bachelor's degrees."

"MCCA is delighted to partner with WGU Missouri," said Zora Mulligan, executive director of MCCA. "This collaboration will offer an additional path for our students to continue their education at an accredited institution that accommodates real-life schedules."

Community college leaders from around the state announced the agreement with WGU Missouri on Monday. It is the first such statewide agreement that MCCA has signed on behalf of the state's community colleges. Graduates of MCCA-member colleges will also be eligible for the new WGU Missouri Community College Partner Scholarship, valued at up to $2,000.

Governor Jay Nixon lauded the agreement. "In order to continue growing our economy, it's important to have affordable and accessible higher education options so that every Missourian willing to work hard -- no matter their age, background, or circumstances – can find a good job and move up the economic ladder," Nixon said. "WGU Missouri and our state's community colleges help students fit higher education into their busy lives."

About 750,000 Missouri adults have some college but no degree. WGU Missouri's flexible and affordable model can help these adults leverage their skills and experience to achieve their college degree while saving time and money. Established by Governor Nixon in 2013, WGU Missouri offers online, accredited degree programs in business, K-12 teacher education, information technology, and health professions, including nursing. WGU Missouri uses competency-based learning, which allows students to learn at their own pace. Rather than spending a prescribed amount of time in each course, students advance when they demonstrate mastery of course materials. This allows them to move quickly through what they already know so they can focus on what they still need to learn. As a result, many students are able to accelerate; the average time to complete a bachelor's degree at WGU is about three years.

Colleges participating in the articulation agreement include Crowder College, East Central College, Jefferson College, Metropolitan Community College, Mineral Area College, Moberly Area Community College, North Central Missouri College, Ozarks Technical Community College, St. Charles Community College, St. Louis Community College, State Fair Community College, and Three Rivers College.

For more information on WGU Missouri, including benefits for community college graduates, visit missouri.wgu.edu/community_colleges.

For more information about MCCA, visit www.mccatoday.org.

About WGU Missouri

WGU Missouri is an online, competency-based university created to expand access to higher education for Missouri residents. The university offers more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the fields of business, K-12 teacher education, information technology, and health professions, including nursing. WGU Missouri faculty members serve as mentors, working one-on-one with students, offering guidance, support, and individualized instruction.

Established in 2013 through a partnership with nationally recognized Western Governors University, WGU Missouri is open to all qualified Missouri residents. The university is nonprofit and self-sustaining on flat-rate tuition of about $6,000 per year for most programs.

Degrees are granted under the accreditation of Western Governors University, which is accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). Teachers College programs are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE*).

More information is available at missouri.wgu.edu or by calling 855.948.8493.

*Western Governors University offers nursing programs that are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 5380, Washington DC 20036, 202-877-6791).

About MCCA

The Missouri Community College Association is a statewide organization through which Missouri's community colleges work together to advance common agendas.  MCCA provides advocacy, education, information, and networking opportunities in service of the state's 5,700 community college faculty, staff, administrators, and trustees.

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Contact for media inquiries:
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