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NewsFeb 4, 2021

Lesley joins community college transfer guarantee agreement

Partnership with higher-education advocates, other institutions, will increase opportunities for students from underserved communities

Aerial photo of classroom from behind the teacher

To expand our commitment to helping community college graduates achieve their dreams of a bachelor’s degree, the university recently joined 15 other independent, four-year institutions, and all 15 Massachusetts community colleges, in signing onto the Massachusetts Independent College Transfer Guarantee.

Supported by a generous grant from the Teagle Foundation and the Davis Educational Foundation, the Massachusetts Guarantee is a statewide effort to establish systematic transfer pathways between Massachusetts community colleges and four-year independent institutions, focusing on the liberal arts. The Massachusetts Guarantee is part of the New England Independent College Transfer Guarantee initiative. 

Lesley already has longstanding partnerships with several Massachusetts community colleges to increase underserved community members’ access to a four-year degree. This new alliance builds on Lesley’s existing pathways. 

"While Lesley has a legacy of serving adult learners and transfer students, the launch of our Community College Partnerships in 2014 had already positioned us among the most transfer-friendly private institutions in Massachusetts providing affordable bachelor’s degree completion options,” says Jennine Tambio, director of transfer student success. “The Mass Guarantee Program is an exciting next step for us as we seek to broaden and promote our access mission to students across the state and open opportunities to associate degree holders to more of our unique and high-quality bachelor programs." 

The New England Board of Higher Education (NEBHE) and its partners – the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in Massachusetts (AICUM) and Massachusetts Association of Community Colleges  –  signed a memorandum of agreement with, in addition to Lesley: Becker College, Boston Baptist College, Cambridge College, Curry College, Dean College, Fisher College, Gordon College, Laboure College, Lasell University, MCPHS University, Nichols College, Regis College, Springfield College, Suffolk University and William James College.

Additional institutions are expected to join and are welcome to sign on to the agreement at any time. 

The guarantee is designed to unify transfer within the state and is modeled on the ​MassTransfer A2B Degree program. It ensures acceptance at a participating institution for associate’s degree-holding students who graduated with a minimum grade point average of 2.5. The Massachusetts Guarantee landing page is a navigational resource for community college graduates seeking to transfer to a four-year institution to earn their bachelor's degree. 

Institutions will begin accepting transfer applications from eligible community college graduates early as this month. In addition to guaranteed admission, transfer applicants benefit from waived application fees, financial aid and scholarships tailored to community college graduates as well as defined transfer pathways.  

“NEBHE is very pleased to work with a distinguished group of state and institutional partners to create expanded transfer pathways for students in Massachusetts,” said Michael K. Thomas, president and CEO of NEBHE. “Stronger links between our two-year institutions and our outstanding independent colleges and universities simply makes sense. The Massachusetts Guarantee will expand the range of high-quality, affordable bachelor’s degree programs available — benefiting our students, our institutions and our workforce.”

The 15 Massachusetts Community Colleges serve more than half of the undergraduate students in the Massachusetts public higher education system, accounting for 50 percent of undergraduate credit enrollments. This pool of talented community college students helps drive the state’s economy with many graduating and enrolling in a four-year institution.

For more information, consult our own Mass Guarantee webpage.