ECU, FSU establish student pipelines in key areas
Last fall, university leaders signed a memorandum of agreement to develop pipelines linking FSU’s undergraduate students to ECU’s professional and graduate programs. They have now formally established plans to bring that agreement to fruition by signing four early assurance agreements, which outline the criteria and requirements that will guarantee admission of FSU students into ECU’s graduate programs. Both schools also agreed to collaborate around providing experiential learning opportunities and best practice programming for student success, retention and transition into graduate programs.
“Diversifying graduate school pathways is central to our commitment to maximize student success and diversify our student body as we live out our mission to be a national model for student success, public service and regional transformation,” said LaKesha Forbes, associate provost for equity and diversity at ECU. “In keeping with that commitment, the Office for Equity and Diversity has been working collaboratively with both internal and external academic leaders to develop partnerships for graduate school pathways with Fayetteville State University.”
The early assurance agreements include:
- Fine Arts Graduate Program – Connects students at FSU pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in visual arts to the Master of Fine Arts in art program in ECU’s School of Art and Design.
- Kinesiology – Connects FSU students with the ECU College of Health and Human Performance’s Master of Science in kinesiology with a sport management concentration.
- Biology – Connects FSU students with ECU graduate programs in biology in the ECU Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences.
- Network Technology – Connects FSU students with the master’s degree program in network technology in the ECU College of Engineering and Technology’s Department of Technology Systems.
Each agreement outlines areas of support offered to FSU students transitioning to ECU, including workshops with ECU faculty, visits and meetings with faculty and current students, feedback about application materials, mentoring, and research and community engagement opportunities.
FSU has an enrollment of about 6,700 students, almost half of whom are adult learners, so online programs and workforce development are areas of focus for the partnership between the institutions.
Future steps include the development of a summer research program designed to engage FSU undergraduate students with ECU’s graduate faculty and programs.
ECU’s developing partnership with FSU is one facet of a broader effort to ensure and expand access for students across the region and state. ECU has also established co-admission agreements with more than 40 of North Carolina’s community colleges through its Pirate Promise program, and administrators recently signed a memorandum of understanding with UNC Pembroke to foster collaboration with that institution.