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Hudson Valley and State University of New York at Albany held a joint ceremony in recognition of their new transfer agreement.
UAlbany is the most popular transfer destination for Hudson Valley students with over 240 matriculating to the institution in 2016. The agreement guarantees credit transferability from Hudson Valley to 34 Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degree programs at Albany.
Transfers to UAlbany’s colleges and schools of arts and sciences, business, criminal justice, education, engineering and applied science, public health, social welfare, and more will now have an uninterrupted degree track between the two institutions from their associates program to their bachelor’s degree.
Hudson Valley President Andrew Matonak and University at Albany’s Dean of Undergraduate Education Jeanette Altarriba met to speak and sign a document that affirms the joint measure between the two colleges.
“We’ve had a long-standing partnership with the University at Albany and this is just one new effort where we provide opportunities for our students,” said Matonak.
“We very much welcome students to come onto our campus from a variety of institutions and we’re most pleased with Hudson Valley’s proximity to University at Albany,” said Altarriba.
A designated transfer-student program coordinator simplifies the transfer process for student within Altarriba’s office.
“We want to help students integrate into the institution as quickly as possible while making them feel comfortable and ensuring that it’s a smooth transition for them,” said Altarriba.
Through Altarriba’s office and UAlbany’s transfer student program coordinator, students with an interest in easing the transition of other transfers can become transfer transition leaders like Kaylin Stewart, a recent transfer from Hudson Valley to Albany.
“Before a student gets to the University at Albany, one of the leaders will email them, offering to answer any general questions they may have while asking how their transition process is going,” said Stewart.
Once a student reaches campus, student transition leaders assist in hosting various programs that integrate them to campus life socially and academically.
“This will be the first articulation agreement that we have in three new areas, particularly when you consider our [new] College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity,” said Altarriba.
The College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity is an initiative developed under the governorship of Andrew Cuomo which UAlbany was “thrilled” to be named the home of. This program, which offers graduate certification programs, bachelor’s degrees and associate degrees, is the first of its kind in the United States.
The goal of some students on Hudson Valley’s campus may be to increase their GPA in preparation for transfer or to take advantage of the relatively cheap credits offered, so that general education credits can be accrued before a student pursues their more specialized courses.
The transfer agreement may more directly help these two types of students, but even those pursuing certification programs and terminal associate degrees end up further endowed with choice after having their options expanded.
Computer information systems major Tyriek Barker said that agreement between both institutions is a “great” move.
“It gives people an opportunity to start off [at Hudson Valley], get a cheaper education and eventually transfer on [once] they’re better prepared [for a university curriculum] as opposed to just going straight [to a 4-year college] after high school,” said Barker.
Early childhood education major Marissa Vaughn believes that the partnerships and agreements Hudson Valley has been making are great steps for the campus.
“We’ve now [come to agreements] with Cazenovia College and SUNY Cobleskill and I’m interested [transferring to] Cazenovia, but this still opens up opportunities for other majors,” said Vaughn.
Although she was initially concerned about her credits transferring, learning about the Cazenovia transfer system, similar to UAlbany’s in program recognition, ended those concerns.
Individual studies major Amber Scattareggia isn’t personally concerned about her credits, but knows it is a concern for other classmates.
“I think UAlbany is making a movement to get Hudson Valley students to transfer [to their campus] and that they want to ease the process of [student] education,” said Scattareggia.
Biological sciences major Dante Hernandez likes the sense of assurance that a class taken at Hudson Valley won’t end up “wasted,” because there’ll be institutions like UAlbany who will most likely accept their credit.
“I plan to transfer to Siena College after my two years [at Hudson Valley] and I’m concerned because I don’t want to waste money on classes and credits that don’t mean anything,” said Hernandez.
Although Hernandez hasn’t examined Siena’s transfer policy regarding his credits, the agreement between Hudson Valley and UAlbany has made him consider reviewing UAlbany and Siena College’s reception toward his major.
Individual studies major Justus Guy knows students who are concerned about whether their credits will transfer with specific attention toward cases of some institutions accepting a credit, but reclassifying it as, for example, an art rather than what may have been an English credit at another institution.
Guy is considering transferring from Hudson Valley to UAlbany or Cornell and the recent agreement relaxes his own concerns about credit transferability to UAlbany. The agreement “edges” his decision toward UAlbany “a little bit,” but if Guy is accepted to Cornell, he will most likely matriculate there.
Transfer agreements like these, according to Matonak, are one of the reasons Hudson Valley is a reactive institution that maintains a sensitivity toward student needs and it’s place in the region’s education system.
“We really do appreciate all the great partnerships that [Hudson Valley] has and will continue to [negotiate],” said Matonak.
The press events and signing took place on Feb. 24 and a full list of included programs can be found in the Siek Campus Center, Suite 290 at the Center for Careers and Transfer Office.