UW-Madison, MATC: Announce Student ‘Transfer Contract’

CONTACT: John Wiley, through University Communications, (608) 262-8287; Bettsey Barhorst, through Janet Kelly, (608) 246-6127

MADISON – The University of Wisconsin-Madison and its longstanding local partner, Madison Area Technical College, are strengthening their productive relationship.

As part of a pilot agreement signed today (April 19) by UW-Madison Chancellor John Wiley and MATC President Bettsey Barhorst, a qualified student can begin his or her postsecondary education as a freshman at MATC and two years later, be guaranteed admission as a transfer student at UW-Madison.

The “Transfer Contract” program is designed for students beginning as freshmen in the Liberal Arts Transfer Program at MATC who meet specified levels of academic achievement at MATC and meet requirements for transfer admission to UW-Madison.

Currently, 3,990 of UW-Madison’s 26,619 undergraduate students, or 15 percent, first enrolled as transfer students. During the past decade, about 10 percent of all transfer students came from MATC, making it the single largest sending institution.

The goal of the Transfer Contract is to expand access to UW-Madison for students at Madison Area Technical College, and ultimately, increase the state’s number of four-year degree holders. An unlimited number of qualifying MATC students will be able to take part in the program every year.

“MATC does an exceptional job of preparing students to transfer to UW-Madison,” says Wiley. “The Transfer Contract provides detailed guidance for students so they know early in their enrollment what they need to do to establish the academic momentum that will assure their admission to UW-Madison. It takes the guesswork out of their planning.”

“I’ve often called MATC an ‘on-ramp’ to UW- Madison for our students,” says Barhorst. “Now I can say it is a ‘guaranteed on-ramp.’ Students now will know exactly what process to follow, what classes to take, how many credits to earn and what grade point average they need to maintain to be accepted.”

Specifically, qualified Liberal Arts Transfer Program students will be guaranteed admission to UW-Madison when they apply as transfer students after completing 54 credits in specified areas and earn a 3.0 GPA. Transfer applications from students who are otherwise qualified but have earned a 2.6-2.99 GPA will receive special consideration.

Transfer Contract students completing the transfer into UW-Madison will be on equal footing with other transfer students for admission into more than 100 academic programs.

Following her graduation from MATC’s Liberal Arts Transfer Program in 2000, Marjorie Cook enrolled at UW-Madison as a transfer student in sociology and history.

“For me, coming to MATC was the second chance that allowed me to continue my education,” she says. “I earned an associate degree and even served as president of the Student Senate. After transferring to UW-Madison, I continued my academic success and earned both bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Now I’m completing a doctoral program at the UW-Madison and conducting research on transfer students myself.”

Cook believes that programs that make transferring between colleges easier for students to understand will ensure that more students reach their potential for academic success.

“A clear path, support through advising, college services and encouraging faculty make all the difference in the world,” she adds.

The new UW-Madison-MATC collaboration is similar to the guaranteed transfer contract that exists between the UW Colleges and the four-year UW System institutions.

In addition, Transfer Contract agreements between UW-Madison and Nicolet Area Technical College in Rhinelander and Milwaukee Area Technical College are nearly completed and will be finalized soon, Wiley adds.

The new Transfer Contract program differs from the existing Connections agreement between UW-Madison and MATC in that students do not need to apply for admission to UW-Madison before beginning at MATC.

For more information about transferring to UW-Madison, visit http://www.admissions.wisc.edu/transfer.php .

For information about the MATC Liberal Arts Transfer Program, visit http://matcmadison.edu/matc/ASP/showprogram.asp?ID=3088 .