Leaders of Tyler Junior College and Jarvis Christian University signed an agreement on Tuesday.
The plan will strengthen the collaboration between both institutions and ease the path for students to fulfill their higher education goals.
Through the agreement, TJC and JCU aligned mutual programs, including: biology, business administration, business (accounting), business (computer information systems), business management, chemistry, criminal justice, cybersecurity, English, history, journalism (mass communication), kinesiology, mathematics and social work.
TJC students can complete their associate degree in any of these programs and seamlessly transfer to JCU without losing course credits.
“I am especially excited about this collaboration that will allow two great institutions to come together and serve the students to choose to get their education in East Texas,” said Dr. Glenell M. Lee-Pruitt, JCU president and CEO. “We are excited to partner with you in order to open up pathways for our students. We know that if students are going to live their best lives, the best education they can get can help them to do that.
Lee-Pruitt continued, “At the end of the day, we are preparing students to live and work in East Texas and Texas but also to be great national and global citizens and to make sure that this nation is best nation it can be.”
Front, from left: Cynthia Stancil-Jackson, JCU chief of staff; Dr. Saliba Mukoro, JCU dean of graduate school; Dr. Kenoye Eke, JCU vice president for institutional advancement and development; Dr. Cynthia Hester, JCU interim provost and vice president for academic affairs; Dr. Juan E. Mejia, TJC president and CEO; Dr. Glenell M. Lee-Pruitt, JCU, president and CEO; Dr. Deana Sheppard, TJC provost and vice president for academic and student affairs; Mitch Andrews, TJC vice president for institutional advancement; Dr. Darrin Q. Rankin, JCU vice president for enrollment management and retention; Dr. Cleopatra Allen, JCU transformation officer / assistant to the provost; second row, Dr. Lee Grimes, TJC associate vice provost for academic affairs; the Rev. Dominique Grate, JCU assistant vice president for advancement; Dr. Andre Richardson, JCU vice president for student affairs; Dr. Dorothy Langley, JCU dean of adult education; Paula Love, JCU vice president for administration and finance; Dr. Benson Kariuki, JCU dean of professional studies; Dr. Herman Howard, JCU dean of arts, humanities and sciences; Jason Lewis, JCU interim director of student success services; Kim Lessner, TJC vice president for operations; and Jeanie Oxler, TJC director of school partnerships.
TJC President and CEO Dr. Juan E. Mejia said, “Today is a very special day for TJC, JCU, and our East Texas communities. We believe wholeheartedly in empowering our students to the point of excellence, and a major strategy for this is through strategic partnerships such as this. It is said that we can go faster alone, but we can go further and achieve more if we do it together, through authentic partnerships.”
The agreement also connects students to Transfer Academic Excellence Scholarships offered by JCU from $4,000 to $8,000 over the remaining two-year period, based on academic achievement. These scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis and are renewable at the end of each year for the period the student is attending Jarvis.
“Our students need to be able to move on to the next level, which could mean a bachelor’s or a master’s degree sometimes in many areas,” said Dr. Cynthia Hester, JCU interim provost. “At Jarvis Christian University, we have the opportunity today to have students go into more than 10 different areas at our university, so they can move on to a bachelor’s degree.”
Hester added that JCU also offers online master’s degree programs in business and criminal justice.
“About 65 percent of jobs in the United States are going to require some sort of post-secondary degree, but only about 40 percent of Texans have such a degree or certification,” said Dr. Deana Sheppard, TJC provost and vice president for academic and student affairs. “What we are doing today is truly changing the trajectory of lives — one individual at a time — so students can get through their college journey, enter the workforce and work right here in East Texas.