From Archer to Billiken
By: Sean E. Thomas
2+SLU is a new program being implemented to offer students at St. Louis Community College a clearer path to a bachelor level degree from Saint Louis University (SLU). The program is designed to heighten student awareness upon enrollment of the opportunities available to them at SLU via STLCC. The program is available to both new students and those who may already be enrolled at STLCC.
“It allows you to be dually admitted at St. Louis Community College and at SLU so that while you’re taking your classes here you can meet with advisors at SLU,” said Andrew Langler, vice chancellor of academic affairs at STLCC. “You can take advantage of their (SLU) academic support services, you can use their library resources, you can get to know that campus so you’ll be better prepared when you transfer from St. Louis Community College to SLU.”
While transferring from STLCC to SLU has always been an option, the purpose of 2+SLU is to give students an opportunity to see the entire picture right from the beginning. While being dual enrolled at both institutions the student will have the opportunity to speak with an advisor at SLU and select a program from the 2+SLU portfolio before even beginning classes at STLCC, ensuring the that their credits transfer immediately into their course of study at SLU. This will help students save time and money along the way to their bachelor’s degree.
“The agreement is an extension of a relationship we’ve had with St. Louis Community College for years where there’s been an informal working arrangement where the advisors were always welcome to call us with questions about, ‘Hey, what classes should we tell students to take,’ or ‘What majors are going to be better for people in this AA or AAS program?’’ assistant director of admissions at SLU Matt Schutte said. “What this has done is formalize that and take some of the guess work out. Some students need that specific pathway, they want to see that and this gives them that early on.”
Another highlight of 2+SLU is that students enrolled in the program will not have to enroll again upon transferring to SLU from STLCC. Being enrolled in a 2+SLU program means that once a student has completed their course requirements for their associate degree at STLCC, they will begin attending classes at SLU the following semester.
“If you’re interested in going to SLU it will be much more streamlined and much greater chance that the things that you take here (STLCC) are going to work for you there,” Langler said.
The programs offered cover a variety of disciplines from aviation management, to biomedical engineering to marketing and social work, just to name a few. If a student’s area of interest isn’t listed among those available in the program, they can contact an advisor at SLU.
“I’ve talked to five students… three of them asked about majors that weren’t on the list, we can help all of them,” Schutte said. “If you do four semesters here , that can lead to four semesters with us.”
Schutte pointed out that SLU is a Jesuit University, and the Jesuit mission aligns nicely with the community college mission which involves “social justice and equality for everyone,” in reference to SLU’s involvement in the early formation of a community college in St. Louis. He added that 2+SLU reaffirms SLU’s commitment to the St. Louis community College System.
Lashone Gibson is the associate dean of admission and is currently in her doctorate program at SLU. “[I’m excited about] The opportunity to strengthen our partnership with the community college…as well as the opportunity to increase access to that bachelor degree level within higher education for St. Louis Community College students,” Gibson said.