Topeka A new program will allow students at 13 of the state's community colleges to earn degrees from Washburn University without ever cracking a book in Topeka.
University officials on Friday outlined the program, which will grant degrees to students who participate in the Partnership for Learning and Networking 2+2 program. Students will be able to complete an associate's degree at the community college, then a bachelor's degree from Washburn in two years.
The program began in 1999 with classes offered at Johnson County Community College and Kansas City, Kan., Community College.
Washburn President Jerry Farley said the PLAN 2+2 will expand this academic year to include: Barton County, Butler County, Cloud County, Coffeyville, Garden City, Colby, Highland, Independence, Labette, Pratt and Seward County community colleges.
Degrees will be granted in criminal justice, applied science in technology administration or a bachelor of integrated programs degree in liberal arts, administrative communications or communications management.
Students will take 40 hours of courses using the Internet, e-mail, CD-ROMS, videotapes and video conferencing.
"It is truly a partnership between Washburn University and the community colleges," said Farley, adding that the link between human and technological resources made the cyber college program a "brick and click" plan.
Highland's president, Betty Stevens, and Seward's president, James R. Grote, said the program brought the opportunity for a four-year degree to the more remote parts of the state.
Al Dickes, Washburn's dean of enrollment management, joined the news conference from Garden City through video conferencing. He said Plan 2+2 enrollment would be the equivalent to the hours taken by 100 full-time students.