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TransferUTA initiative to increase resources, support for students who want to earn bachelor’s degrees

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Media Contact: Kristin Sullivan

News Topics: admissions, student life, students

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The University of Texas at Arlington announced today “TransferUTA,” a major initiative to ensure that students who begin their academic careers at a two-year college move seamlessly through the University and have a clear path toward earning a bachelor’s degree.

TransferUTA unites recruiting, admissions, orientation and support services for transfer students in a focused effort to increase college completion among an essential population. The University has unified information for prospective, newly admitted and current transfer students in a new web portal page, www.uta.edu/transferuta. The branded, student-facing effort is a beacon for all students who want to complete their degrees and a signal that UTA is a transfer-friendly university.

“Transfer students are already successful. They’ve completed coursework, and we will ensure that they experience a seamless transition between two-year and four-year institution as they progress to a degree,” said Linda Johnsrud, UTA interim provost for academic affairs. “TransferUTA will provide a support system to ensure these students have the best possible chance of achieving their educational goals.”

State Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo and chairman of the Senate Higher Education Committee, said, "TransferUTA is going to be the model of how institutions can work with students and educational partners to help more Texans earn their degrees faster, at a lower cost and with less student debt in order to increase value to the students and efficiency at the university.”

UTA is Texas’ top choice for transfer students, with 5,750 new undergraduate transfer students enrolled in Fall 2015. U.S. News & World Report ranked UTA the third-largest destination in the nation for transfer students based on its 2015 survey of undergraduate programs.

TransferUTA advances the University’s commitment to achieving the state’s higher education goals under the 60x30TX plan, which calls for 60 percent of adults, ages 25 to 34, to earn a college degree or certificate by 2030. The plan also calls for college graduates to complete programs with marketable skills and manageable student debt loads.

Also among the enhanced TransferUTA services is a new Academic Plaza on the Central Library’s second floor designed as a one-stop resource for tutoring, group Supplemental Instruction and other academic support services. The Academic Plaza’s concierge-style information desk will welcome transfer students and connect them with services to further student success.

Peer mentoring services also will be available at the library through the new I.D.E.A.S. Center, which was created in part through a $2.62 million Department of Education grant to enhance services for transfer and other non-traditional students and help more underserved students earn college degrees.

As part of the TransferUTA program, UTA admissions counselors will continue to schedule regular office hours at two-year college campuses. In a related initiative, this month, UTA and Tarrant County College launched a new Early Transfer Identification Program through which Tarrant County College will share select student data, pre-admit two-year college students and remove barriers that may deter them from pursuing a UTA bachelor’s degree.

“Having a UTA adviser on our campus helps us identify students who want to go to UTA and get them on a pathway so all their credits transfer to UTA without taking additional courses,” said Bill Coppola, president of Tarrant County College Southeast in Arlington. “All of these efforts contribute toward helping our institutions strengthen the workforce.”

Raymund A. Paredes, Texas Commissioner for Higher Education, commended the University on TransferUTA, one of several initiatives discussed during an April 5 “Access, Success Texas” 60x30TX conference on the UTA campus.

“Today, 38.5 percent of young adults in Texas hold a college degree or a professional certificate – and that is not enough to ensure a thriving state economy. We must forge new, innovative programs to rapidly expand the pipeline of students pursuing college degrees,” Paredes said. “UTA is pressing ahead with creative efforts to engage two-year college students early, provide them a clear pathway and ensure that they have the support they need to complete a four-year degree.”

About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie “highest research activity” institution of more than 52,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at www.uta.edu/uta/about/rankings.php.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.