Kish among regional community colleges collaborating with Rockford University to offer degree completion opportunities


MALTA - Rockford University has announced its partnership with three regional community colleges - Highland Community College, Kishwaukee College and Rock Valley College - to provide a flexible, seamless option to transfer college credits or an associate degree (A.A., A.S., or A.A.S.) toward a bachelor’s degree in business management or accounting.

The collaboration between the institutions facilitates the easy transfer of credits from the community college to the degree completion program at the PURI School of Business at Rockford University. Community colleges are often where students begin their higher education, earning general education credits and exploring interest in a particular major.

“Rockford University has long-standing partnerships with our regional community colleges,” noted Dr. Eric Fulcomer, president of Rockford University. “We believe this collaboration is good for our students and the region as it provides another path to a bachelor’s degree.”

Chris Kuberski, president of Highland Community College said as part of their strategic plan, Highland has emphasized strengthening partnerships with other educational institutions in an effort to expand educational pathways for students. “Our programs provide a solid foundation, and we’re happy to facilitate the transfer of students’ credits to the next step in their education and career. We appreciate our partnership with Rockford University and how it intersects with our goals as an institution,” he added.

Established partnerships make the transfer of earned college credits easy and pave the way for more students to earn bachelor’s degrees. “Many of our students start their education at Kishwaukee College and then choose to continue their education after completing their degree with us,” stated Dr. Laurie Borowicz, president of Kishwaukee College. “The partnership with Rockford University provides an opportunity for students to seamlessly transfer to a bachelor’s degree program, without losing time or credits.”

Ron Geary, VP and chief academic officer at Rock Valley College, said some of the hurdles and red tape are being removed. “Collaborations with our four-year partner institutions help us better advise and prepare students for success, and Rockford University’s willingness to accept all associate’s degrees – even those in applied science – opens up opportunities for a large percentage of our student body,” he said.

With more students interested in completing degrees to advance their careers, Rockford University’s PURI School of Business is innovating ways to put a bachelor’s degree in business or accounting more easily within reach for adults juggling school, work, and families. In addition to this collaboration, Rockford University’s degree completion program is now offering experienced workers the opportunity to apply up to 25 credit hours of documented work training programs toward a degree in business management or accounting studies. For students with real-world, valuable skills and training to translate, this saves both time and money, allowing student to more quickly earn that next promotion and career-long success.

The collaboration with community colleges, credit for documented work training, multiple start dates every five weeks, and hybrid online and face-to-face classes are just some of the ways Rockford University is meeting the needs of today’s non-traditional college students.

“The students enrolling in our degree completion program are different than our traditional college students,” said Dr. Mandolen Mull, director of the Adult Degree Completion Program at Rockford University. “They have demanding jobs, families, and other obligations to manage and yet still need to unlock their career and earning potential by developing skills and earning their bachelor’s degree. We’re proud to have created a unique program just for them and continue to find ways to adapt to meet their needs.”

Rockford University’s degree completion program is accepting applications year-round.