Community college students sometimes consider transferring to a baccalaureate (4-year degree) institution prior to completing their associate degrees. In most instances, it is to the student’s advantage to earn their degree and plan to transfer upon completion. These reasons include:
- Completing an associate degree provides you with an important, marketable credential. Should circumstances prevent the completion of your baccalaureate degree, you will only be able to present an accumulated number of credits to a potential employer, rather than being able to state on your resume that you have earned your associate degree.
- Completing an associate degree "locks in" your credits to a credential, so they will never be obsolete when presented later in life.
- Many baccalaureate institutions view an associate degree as a “unit” for acceptance and permit graduates to enter with junior status. Students who have not earned their degree often experience course by course credit evaluation which can result in a lower number of credits accepted.
- Popular 2 + 2 programs and accelerated degree completion programs at four-year colleges and universities recognize the value of your associate degree. Without the degree, you may not be eligible for these programs.
- You will save money. Tuition and fees at the average community college run $2,544. By comparison, four-year private colleges charge an average of $26,273 a year in tuition and fees. Then, factor in the significant savings that come from living at home while attending a community college for the first two years of bachelor’s degree. Information courtesy of Daily Finance.
Below are transfer opportunities for Pennsylvania Highlands students. Students should always work with the Pennsylvania Highlands Student Success Center, their advisors, and the transfer counselors at the college they’d like to attend.
30-credit Transfer Credit Framework
The Transfer Credit Framework allows students to transfer up to 30 credits of foundation courses to any of the Pennsylvania participating colleges and universities and have those courses count toward graduation. The Framework includes courses in English, public speaking, math, science, art, humanities, history and the behavioral and social sciences. Click here for more details.
American Public University (A.A. and A.S. degrees)
Pennsylvania Highlands Community College (Penn Highlands) and American Public University (APU) have established an educational credit transfer partnership. In addition to traditional credit transfer opportunities, this enables students who graduate from Penn Highlands on or after May 1, 2012 to apply their completed coursework towards an APU online degree. Click here for more information, the transfer credit partnership, APU Tuition & Fees, or to look at a Transfer FAQ. You can also apply to APU online or chat with an admissions representative.
Art Institute of Pittsburgh
The articulation agreement makes it possible for the graduates of Pennsylvania Highlands to transfer anywhere from 43 to 65 credits depending on the chosen bachelor’s program at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh providing the agreement’s conditions, policies and procedures are met. Some of the conditions include having a 2.0 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale, a course grade of C or better must be earned to be acceptable for transfer, and the student must meet all admissions requirements currently expected of new college students entering The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. Scholarships are also available. Please visit an advisor or the Student Success Center for more information.
DeSales University (A.A. and A.S. degrees)
A student who has earned an A.A. (Associate of Arts) degree or an A.S. (Associates of Science) degree is assured admission to DeSales University. Students seeking joint enrollment will complete both Pennsylvania Highlands Community College and DeSales University applications, indicating on the DeSales University application or other specified form that they are seeking admission under the joint enrollment agreement.
Franklin University (all majors)
Through Franklin’s Community College Alliance, Pennsylvania Highlands graduates can continue their education and complete a Franklin University bachelor’s degree virtually without leaving our campus. Through our 3+1 partnership, students can transfer up to 84 credit hours from Pennsylvania Highlands to apply toward their bachelor degree, then complete approximately 40 credit hours online with Franklin University. Franklin offers 29 bachelor degree options to Pennsylvania Highlands graduates.
Juniata College (Accounting and Business)
Finish with a respected national leader in a curriculum coordinated by Pennsylvania Highland with Juniata’s faculty. Generous financial aid is available for transferring students to help make college costs manageable. When transferring to Juniata, choose from four main programs: accounting, business, entrepreneurship, and an integrated program of philosophy, politics and economics. Opportunities exist for internships and study abroad. About 40 percent of Juniata’s graduates go on to earn MBAs at prestigious business schools such as Harvard, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Columbia, and Syracuse.
Lincoln University (all A.A. and A.S. degrees)
Students graduating with the Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree are eligible to transfer to programs in the School of Social Sciences and Behavioral Studies, School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and the School of Humanities. Interested students must complete the Intent to Transfer form at the beginning of their last semester at Pennsylvania Highlands. A copy of the agreement is available here.
Kaplan University (all majors)
Students who complete an associate’s degree with a minimum of 60 semester credits (90 quarter credits) will be eligible for a block transfer of 90 quarter credits, junior status, and acceptance into Kaplan’s advanced start baccalaureate option. Penn Highlands' alumni will also receive a 10% tuition discount if they notify Kaplan admissions that they are taking advantage of this agreement. Click here for more information.
Mount Aloysius College (Accounting, Business, Computer Science, Criminal Justice, Psychology and Individual courses)
Mount Aloysius and Pennsylvania Highlands have a 2+2 agreement for the Accounting Business Administration, Computer Science, Criminal Justice and Psychology Associate Degrees. These agreements provide easy transfer of credit and with junior standing in most cases. In addition, Mount Aloysius also accepts a variety of Pennsylvania Highlands courses and can transfer up to 90 credits for a Bachelor Degree. Transfer scholarships are available to full-time students. See an adviser or the Student Success Center for the list of courses and the 2+2 agreements.
Pennsylvania College of Technology (multiple majors)
Penn College and Pennsylvania Highlands have established 2+2 agreements for Accounting and Business Management. Graduates will seamlessly transfer with junior level status. Graduates of the Restaurant/Culinary Arts degree may transfer with a 2+3 agreement. Graduates of Allied Health Careers, and in possession of or soon-to-be credentialed/licensed/registered health care area, may enter the Bachelor of Applied Health degree. This degree may be completed online. Graduates with an A.A.S. technical degree may complete the Bachelor of Technology Management degree, also available online. The agreements include additional coursework that may be taken at either institution. Penn College requires 36 credits to be completed at their institution.
Saint Francis University (all majors)
Saint Francis invites Pennsylvania Highlands students to enjoy the benefits of a small-school learning environment (personal attention, interaction with faculty, small class sizes, faculty advising, and the chance to make a difference) at a comprehensive university offering NCAA Division I athletics; the opportunity to study abroad in Ambialet France; a wide array of majors; a newly-built Wellness Institute; and Schools of Arts and Letters, Business, Health Sciences, and Science.
Saint Joseph's University
Saint Joseph’s University, in partnership with Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, offers a 10% tuition reduction for students accepted into SJU's online Bachelors Degree completion program (BS in Professional and Liberal Studies). The online BS PLS program allows a student to transfer up to 75 credits to finish their Bachelors degree in a flexible, online format. There are two concentration tracks that are offered. Organizational Development and Leadership will allow a student to develop marketable skills in leadership and organizational dynamics. The second concentration offered is Autism Studies which consists of six courses approved by the BACB (Behavior Analyst Certification Board). This allows a student to learn the theories, techniques, treatments and therapies of autism. Click here for more information.
PA State System of Higher Ed (Business Administration, Communication Studies, Computer Science, Criminal Justice. Early Childhood Education, Environmental Science, and Psychology)
Pennsylvania's Public School Code of 1949 requires the colleges and universities that participate in the commonwealth's Statewide College Credit Transfer System to develop agreements that will allow students to transfer full Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) degrees into parallel bachelor degree programs at the participating institutions with junior standing. Students completing the Business Administration AS, Communications Studies AA, the Computer Science AS, the Criminal Justice AS, the Early Childhood Education AA, or the Psychology AA will be able to transfer the equivalent of the first two years of a bachelor’s degree to any one of the fourteen four-year universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and complete the remainder of their degree program in just two more years of full-time study. Click here to learn more.
PA State-Related Institutions (General Education Credits
To assist students as they prepare to transfer, each state-related institution has identified at least 30 credits from the Transfer Credit Framework that will transfer and count toward the general education requirements for most majors at their institutions. Courses listed in the Transfer Credit Framework represent the type of coursework that is generally completed during the first and second year of a bachelor degree program. These courses are good choices for students who are undecided about the major they wish to pursue or the institution where they plan to transfer. Click here to learn more.
Penn State University (Nanotechnology)
Pennsylvania Highlands is one The Pennsylvania State University’s Nanofabrication Manufacturing Partnership Technology partners. Students may select coursework as General Studies majors, Technology Management majors, or Biotechnology majors in preparation for their application to the program. Students complete a capstone semester of industry-relevant course work at Penn State and then places students with industry partners across the state after graduation. Click here to learn more.
Potomac College (all majors)
Pennsylvania Highlands students who graduate with an AA, AS, or AAS and have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 are guaranteed admission. Potomac College will accept all credits included in the official transcript including credits from previous institutions and up to 30 credits from nontraditional sources such as AP or CLEP to a maximum of 90 credits. Click here for more information.
University of Maryland University College (A.A. and A.S. degrees)
Especially designed for community college students at Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, the UMUC Alliance program provides one curriculum plan for earning an associate's degree and a UMUC bachelor's degree seamlessly. UMUC will accept up to 70 credits from the community college. Click here to learn more.
University of Pittsburgh at Bradford
Pitt-Bradford has reviewed all Pennsylvania Highlands coursework and makes looking up transferability to their campus easy via an online database. Pennsylvania Highlands' students can plan in advance prior transfer in order to maximize the move to one of Pitt-Bradford's 37 bachelor's degrees. Click here to learn more.
University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (Health Professions A.A.S.)
This agreement allows graduates of Pennsylvania Highland’s Community College Associate Degree programs in Radiologic Technology, Paramedic, or Histotechnology to seamlessly transfer into the Bachelor of Science in Healthcare degree from Pitt Johnstown.
University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (other majors)
The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown provides a transfer guide specifically for Pennsylvania Highlands students, which is available in our Student Success Center. A list of courses that Pitt Johnstown will accept from Pennsylvania Highlands can be found here.
Western Governors University (all majors)
Western Governors University is an online, competency based, and accredited institution offering bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Pennsylvania Highlands graduates are eligible for a 5% tuition discount and a waiver of the application fee. Click here to learn more.