Truckee Meadows Community College students have some notable new options as a result of the recent partnership Memorandum of Understanding between Sierra Nevada College (SNC) and TMCC.
SNC Tahoe courses will now be taught on location at TMCC, and starting Fall 2017 three bachelor's degrees will be offered.
The degrees will take the shape of what is known as “two plus two”—the first two years as a TMCC associate degree, followed by upper division third- and fourth-year courses taught by SNC professors at TMCC’s campus and sites in this affordable extension-center style program. Upper division courses will also include evening, online and flexible course scheduling.
“The goal for TMCC is to provide options for students using a university center format in a limited number of programs with both public and private institutions,” said TMCC President Karin Hilgersom, PhD. “The SNC agreement is the first to be completed. TMCC’s academic divisions are working with Sierra Nevada College to offer bachelor degrees in Entrepreneurship, Psychology, and Global Business Management on our campus through a satellite location operated by SNC.”
SNC is a private liberal arts college headquartered in Incline Village, Nevada. It also offers graduate-level programs in education and creative writing to which TMCC and SNC students could eventually progress if they decide to pursue advanced degrees.
“Our goal through this innovative partnership with TMCC is to create a high-value, affordable, seamless pathway for students at TMCC who wish to earn four-year degrees without leaving the TMCC campus,” said Alan Walker, PhD, SNC Tahoe President. “After the first two years of instruction through TMCC, students will be able to complete courses on the TMCC campus leading to a bachelor’s degree through Sierra Nevada College, at a reduced rate.”
SNC is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), the same body that accredits TMCC. The main campus of SNC Tahoe is in Incline Village, NV, with satellite centers in Reno, Las Vegas, and on the campus of Lake Tahoe Community College in South Lake Tahoe, CA.
Compelling Reasons to Collaborate
Both colleges are committed to providing a high-quality education, and making that education accessible and affordable for the region’s residents. The institutions agree that community college students typically have work and family responsibilities that make them more bound to a locality, and not as able to relocate for transfer to four-year schools out of the region or across the country.
Also, TMCC students who have become comfortable on the campus would be able to continue in a place they have become accustomed to and that they have come to know is supportive.
“I think it’s a great idea—students will be more familiarized with this campus than going to another one, especially if they can get their bachelor’s degree here,” said Paige Richard, environmental science major at TMCC.
Mutual Benefits to the Colleges
Benefits of the collaboration extend to the community and to students.
“This partnership represents good public policy because it leverages existing resources, lowers the cost of education, and optimizes student success,” Dr. Walker said. “SNC is excited to be working with the forward-thinking leadership at TMCC and to be more integral to Nevada’s economy, workforce development needs, and its future overall.”
In the new partnership, TMCC has agreed to provide and maintain classrooms and administrative offices on its campus sufficient for the needs of SNC to teach and support the upper-division courses. This space will be at no charge to SNC, except SNC will be responsible for specific types of insurance coverage.
Students in the new programs will also have access and use of services such as internet, TMCC Cafe, the Elizabeth Sturm Library, and student support services.
In return, SNC will provide lower tuition rates at $382 per credit hour for upper division courses, not including fees. This tuition rate will be in effect for the 2017-2018 academic year and then be reviewed with TMCC on an annual basis. Federal financial aid and the Millennium Scholarship are available for qualified students.