Help is available for Salt Lake Community College students who want to continue their education at the university level.
Michael Atkinson worked as an advisor at the University of Utah for 20 years before coming to SLCC five years ago. As a transfer advisor he has all the information SLCC students need to switch to the U. or another in-state university.
“Once the students know what they want to do, they need to start working with their program advisor,” he says.
New and current SLCC students who are unsure about their plans can look at the following pointers to prepare for a smooth transfer.
Get a two-year degree
Advisors encourage students to earn their associate degree at SLCC, which generally takes two years to complete for those who have full-time class schedules. Depending on the major, students can finish their general education requirements and some program-specific courses and have them count towards their degree at another school.
Take care of Gen Ed requirements
According to the SLCC catalog, students need to complete 34 general credit hours and another 27 credit hours above the 1000-level mark to earn an associate degree.
Atkinson recommends that students get their math and English classes done first because a lot of students take those classes last and spend a lot more time at the community college then they need to. Students who put off their math classes may have to spend as many as four extra semesters to finish the sequence.
“Just get it done,” Atkinson adds.
Save money at a community college
Student who start their education at a community college will save a lot more money than if they take the same courses at a university. SLCC students who take 12 to 18 credit hours will pay $1,784 in tuition and fees. By contrast, Utah residents who take 15 credit hours at the U. will pay $8,240 in tuition and fees.
Another benefit of community colleges is the class size. SLCC posted on its home page that its average class size is 20 students, and many classes have an enrollment cap which keeps averages down. Students at the U. can expect one out of five classes to have at least 40 students, with some popular courses reaching triple digits.
Take advantage of SLCC promise
SLCC recently announced a new initiative called the SLCC Promise. Beginning fall 2016, the college will pay the tuition and fees for any qualified full-time students who also receive a Pell grant. Students need to apply to determine eligibility.
Visit with an advisor
Atkinson encourages all students to ask for help early in their college career.
“The school has a lot of resources to get help in whatever subject you need to,” he says. “If you have questions, don’t drop out.”
Any student who needs guidance can make an appointment with Atkinson in the Academic and Career Advising office at Taylorsville Redwood Campus.