Concordia has passed a new policy that will make transferring to Concordia easier.
Students transferring in with Associate of Arts (A.A.) degrees or those who have completed the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) will have completed general education requirements that fulfill the majority of Concordia’s Core Curriculum requirements.
“With over a decade of experience in two-year institutions as a faculty, chair, and dean, I am thrilled that the new transfer policy will open the door to a wonderfully diverse student population on our campus,” said Bree Langemo, assistant professor of law and entrepreneurship and director of the Entrepreneurship Center.
“The pathway from a two-year institution to Concordia is so conducive to a common student experience in terms of similarity in small class size, holistic student support, and experiential learning opportunities, and is key to removing barriers and creating transparency of the pathway for two-year students to ensure success,” Langemo added.
Students will still be required to complete a world language and a religion course, which could be transferred into Concordia or, for M State and NDSCC students, taken via Tri-College. Those who complete the MnTC through postsecondary enrollment or dual credit options will be required to take an Inquiry Seminar and a wellness course during their first year at Concordia.
In the past, each general education course was evaluated to determine transferability and core equivalency. Now, students who intend to complete either an A.A. degree or the MnTC before coming to Concordia know exactly how those credits will meet Concordia’s curriculum guidelines.
“I am excited that Faculty Senate approved this approach to supporting transfer students. We get excellent transfer students at Concordia from two-year colleges,” says Dr. Susan Larson, dean of the college. “I look forward to supporting more students of their caliber and depth as a result of this policy.”
A.A. degrees are based in the liberal arts and are designed to transfer specifically to liberal arts four-year majors. Concordia believes this new transfer pathway will encourage students who have earned their two-year A.A. degree at a community college to continue their education. This new requirement will facilitate students who have completed a two-year degree to finish a major at Concordia in two years and will allow time and space for students to explore other courses of interest.
“We look forward to the opportunities to partner with regional two-year colleges to create smooth and welcoming transfer experiences for their students,” Larson said. “As an ELCA college, we are called and empowered to serve the neighbor so that all may flourish. Making it simpler and more welcoming for transfer students to join the Concordia community is aligned with this aspiration.”
The removal of barriers for prospective students considering transferring to Concordia following their previous academic accomplishments is also expected to increase the diversity of the student population, a goal well-aligned with Concordia’s Strategic Plan for 2030 with the Resolution on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Reducing the barriers will also affirm the value of previous degrees and the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) by supporting the transfer of coursework and general education requirements which students considering Concordia may have already successfully completed.
Langemo believes the rich experience and perspective two-year students will bring to campus will contribute greatly to Concordia’s classroom learning environment.
“I know the Concordia community will welcome these transfer students by practicing hospitality and creating a real sense of belonging on our campus,” Langemo said. “I look forward to helping find ways of early integration and exposure for two-year students through Tri-College opportunities, student club engagement, and coordinated partnerships across institutions.”
The new policy is also beneficial for the community colleges offering A.A. degrees. Anne Thurmer, dean for the School of Liberal Arts and Humanities at M State, was excited about the announcement.
“We are thrilled to be developing additional partnerships with Concordia that open new options for our students,” Thurmer said. “Concordia and M State share a focus on small classes and comprehensive student support, so our transfer students will be able to find a home at Concordia that fits how they learn.”