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King University News :: King University, Cleveland State Agreements Will Help Students Earn Degrees

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – King University and Cleveland State Community College (CSCC) announced the signing of both an academic articulation agreement and reverse transfer agreement between the institutions during a meeting held Tuesday, Dec. 3, at Cleveland State’s campus in Cleveland, Tenn. 

“We are delighted to partner with Cleveland State Community College,” says Dr. Greg Jordan, president of King University. “This is an excellent opportunity for students to achieve their dreams of college completion at both the associate and baccalaureate levels.”

Thanks to the articulation agreement established between the two schools, Cleveland State students, upon completion of their associate degree, may enter directly into King’s Graduate Professional Studies and Online Programs (GPS) with priority consideration for admission.  The GPS program provides adult-oriented degree programs designed to reduce the challenges adult learners face.

“We appreciate very much that King University is willing to work with us and give opportunities to our students who wish to continue their education beyond Cleveland State,” says Dr. Carl Hite, president of Cleveland State Community College. “We are also appreciative that they will be keeping track of those students who transfer early and pick up additional courses that meet our graduation requirements and will be informing us of those students.”

“The convenient location is ideal for Cleveland State students because they are already acclimated to the campus,” says John King, vice president of Development and Enrollment Management for King. “Students will be able to complete the bachelor’s degree program in as little as 16 months.”  

The articulation agreement between the two schools is designed to ensure a seamless transition for students transferring from community college to a bachelor’s-level institution.

“This articulation agreement with King University paves the way for graduates of Cleveland State to move directly into their junior year of study when they transfer,” says Dr. Denise King, vice president for Academic Affairs for Cleveland State Community College. “We are excited by the new possibilities that are available to our graduates, particularly those that live in the northern part of our service area; it’s just a 30 minute drive from our Athens Site to the Hardin Valley campus of King University in Knoxville. This is a great option for students ready to take the next step in their education.”

The reverse transfer program will be available to Cleveland State students who have transferred to King University from CSCC prior to the completion of their associate degree program. 

Upon transfer to King University, students who have completed a minimum of 21 semester hours toward their associate degree at any Cleveland State Community College location will be eligible for the reverse transfer program. 

“The reverse transfer creates a mechanism to send information to Cleveland State from King so those students who first attended CSCC can be awarded their associate degree through remaining course requirements completed at King,” says Matt Roberts, chief academic officer and dean of Academic Affairs for King University.

Currently, King has articulation agreements with nine community colleges — five in Tennessee and four in Virginia — including Northeast State Community College, Walters State Community College, Pellissippi State Community College, Roane State Community College, Nashville State Community College, Volunteer State Community College, Virginia Highlands Community College, Mountain Empire Community College, Southwest Virginia Community College, and Wytheville Community College. 

“Reverse transfer is a great opportunity for our students,” says Roberts. “The student earns another credential, and retention rates are higher for students who receive an associate degree through reverse transfer.”

“King looks forward to a wonderful working relationship with Cleveland State Community College,” says Roberts. “As a result of the agreements, Cleveland State will see an increase in its graduation rate, King should see its retention rate increase, and our students will earn a valuable credential on their way to the completion of a bachelor’s degree. Also, these agreements will not only provide for an exceptional education for students, but it will improve economic development for the region.”

According to the Tennessee Higher Education Commission’s 2012 Articulation and Transfer Report, among private institutions in Tennessee, King currently ranks number one in the receipt of transfer students from community colleges and number three in the total number of transfers received. 

In a January 2013 news release, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam commented on his new higher education initiative, Drive to 55. 

“Over the past six months, I’ve spent a lot of time learning from experts in our state and across the country about the challenges we face in higher education,” Haslam said. “Only 32 percent of our state’s adult population has a post-secondary degree, but if we are going to have a workforce that’s job-ready, we need to be at 55 percent by 2025. The conversation needs to be about K (kindergarten) to J with the ‘J’ meaning jobs.”


King University is a Presbyterian, master's-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, digital media, education, and humanities.  Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing.  A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports. For more information about King University, visit King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.