While many students and their families think of community college as an affordable and economical educational end in itself, others view it as a stepping stone to other educational opportunities. At Mercer County Community College, there are several paths that students can take to leverage their associate degrees into full-fledged college and professional degrees.

The most common path is transferring of credits from Mercer to four-year institutions. To facilitate the transfer process Mercer has entered into “transfer articulation agreements” with some 40 colleges and universities.

Not all transfers require that students leave the Mercer campus. MCCC has partnered with several institution to enable Mercer students to obtain bachelors or even master’s degrees by attending on-site classes on the Mercer campus in West Windsor.

Mercer County Community College and Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck have partnered to offer the convenience of earning a bachelor’s or master’s degree from FDU while attending on-site classes at MCCC.

Fairleigh Dickinson offers bachelor’s programs in Communication Studies, Criminal Justice, and specializations in Business & Technology and Hospitality Management, as well as a master’s program in Hospitality Management.

By an arrangement with Felician College in Lodi, NJ, nurses can earn their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees on-site at Mercer. The program is designed for students who are licensed RNs, have earned their associate degree in nursing or a nursing diploma, and have at least 30 liberal arts credits. This program is open to MCCC’s Nursing program associate degree graduates as well as those of MCCC’s cooperative partner institutions: Capitol Health Systems and St. Francis Medical Center. It is also open to nursing graduates of other community colleges, nursing diploma schools, and any registered nurse in the local community.

The Rutgers off campus program provides students who have earned an associate’s degree from an accredited community college the opportunity to pursue a bachelor’s degree. Mercer is the primary site for selected upper-division course offerings, including Political Science, Labor & Employment Relations, and Criminal Justice.

William Paterson University also offers bachelor’s degree programs on-site at Mercer’s West Windsor campus.

Mercer College has also made its educational opportunities available to high school students.

Through Mercer’s “dual enrollment program” students can complete up to 12 MCCC credits during their senior year of high school. Credits earned through the Dual Enrollment Program may be used toward high school and/or college requirements.

The community college’s “Jump Start” program welcomes applications from high school seniors and juniors presently enrolled in any high school and home-schooled residents.

And the college’s Career Prep Program offers high school students — in partnership with Mercer County Technical Schools — challenging college-level courses. Tuition is free to eligible high school students in Mercer County.

Visit www.mccc.edu or call 609-570-3244 for information about the Jump Start program.

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