College students could save money and time amid agreement with EICC and Ambrose

DAVENPORT, Iowa -- Two higher education institutions entered into a partnership that may benefit some area community college students.

On Wednesday, February 21st, leaders from St. Ambrose University and Eastern Iowa Community Colleges signed an agreement aimed at easing the transition and the financial impact for transfer students.

The agreement, which was two years in the making, gives EICC students the opportunity to enroll in classes at St. Ambrose but pay the same tuition rate they pay at their community college.  As explained to a joint statement from the schools, the program allows students to get a jump on their coursework, while paying a lower cost.

To be eligible for the program, students must be enrolled full time at one of the EICC schools (locations include Clinton, Muscatine and Scott Counties) and must be majoring in early childhood and elementary education.  Students may enroll in up to six college credit hours per semester at St. Ambrose.

At Wednesday's announcement, SAU President Sister Joan Lescinski, CSJ, PhD and EICC Chancellor, Don Doucette, PhD spoke about what the program means for students and the institutions.

"(Students) can still complete their degree in four years and get about this dream that they have to join the great corp of educators," said Sister Lescinski.

Doucette said that he hopes the program can keep hard-working students in the Quad Cities.

"Giving (students) opportunities to earn degrees in the hometown that they're already committed to, by working with St. Ambrose, pretty much assures that these teachers are going to be the teachers that populate our public schools."

Roughly 300 of EICC's students are education majors.  They enroll more than 7,000 each fall that take transfer-related classes.

Leaders said they hope to open the partnership program to other majors in the future.