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WIU President Al Goldfarb speaks at the WIU-QC/BHC partnership agreement event March 12.
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BHC, WIU-QC Join Forces to Benefit Transfer Students

March 12, 2009

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MOLINE, IL -- Quad Cities residents interested in engineering, nursing and liberal arts and sciences will soon be able to complete classes at both Black Hawk College (BHC) and Western Illinois University-Quad Cities (WIU-QC) as part of a new dual enrollment program.

The 2+2 agreement between BHC and WIU-QC, which was signed today (March 12), will allow students enrolled in engineering, nursing and liberal arts and sciences degree programs to complete courses at both locations simultaneously.

"This latest partnership with Black Hawk College provides yet another option for individuals pursuing degrees in these high-demand fields. The program provides students with the flexibility to meet their academic needs – and schedules – as they can take the necessary courses at either Black Hawk or WIU-QC," said WIU President Al Goldfarb.

"Articulation agreements maximize the use of public dollars and provide higher education opportunities close to home. It is essential that four-year universities and community colleges work cooperatively to ensure a seamless transition for students," BHC President Gene Gardner said. "The WIU and Black Hawk agreements signed today will enhance options for students and will provide a financial savings to them as well."

According to Vice President of Quad Cities, Planning and Technology Joe Rives, the 2+2 program maximizes institutional resources and potentially decreases the time it takes to complete a degree.

"We are excited to participate with Black Hawk College to offer this agreement to our students. By following Western's Higher Values in Higher Education Strategic Plan, we are further enhancing our student-centered partnerships with Black Hawk College. The new 2+2 program gives students even more chances to succeed by providing a high quality, affordable public higher education close to home," Rives added. "We welcome BHC students to the WIU-QC campus."

By piloting the new program in three majors, WIU builds the base to extend the partnership to other programs at Black Hawk and other community college partners, which will give students in the Quad Cities region access to more educational opportunities, noted WIU Assistant Vice President of Academic Affairs Ronald Williams.

"Western Illinois University-Quad Cities has enjoyed a tremendous partnership with Black Hawk College over the years, and the new degree completion agreement between the two institutions continues our commitment to our community college partners and the region," Williams added.

The RN-BSN completion program is designed to provide registered nurses with the opportunity to complete their bachelor's degree at the WIU-QC campus. The program is comprised of 33 nursing credits to complete the professional portion of the nursing degree after earning an associate degree in nursing.

"We are grateful to the administration of Black Hawk College for working with us to make it possible for Quad Cities students to take advantage of specially tailored baccalaureate programs in nursing and liberal arts and sciences through Western's College of Arts and Sciences (CAS)," said CAS Dean Inessa Levi.

The 133-semester hour engineering degree will be a plus-two degree completion program (junior and senior years) articulated with the pre-engineering transfer programs at the WIU-Macomb campus and community colleges in Illinois, Iowa and Missouri. Western's Quad Cities-based engineering program will be linked to QC businesses through required internships, cooperative education experiences and capstone projects.

"A close working relationship with Black Hawk College has been integral to Western's engineering program from the earliest phases of the program design. Through this partnership with Black Hawk, we've been able to actively support the College of Business and Technology's commitment to enriching academic excellence and providing educational opportunity to all students," said Tom Erekson, dean of Western's College of Business and Technology.

"It is essential that quality higher education be accessible. The collaborative work between Black Hawk College and Western Illinois University-Quad Cities has resulted in several new higher education opportunities for area residents," said BHC Vice President for Instruction and Student Services Rose Campbell. "We are pleased to add these programs to our existing partnership."

For more information, contact WIU-QC at (309) 762-9481 or BHC at (309) 796-5100.

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing