News & Announcements

Bold New Tri-C/CSU Program Changes Dynamic for Local Students

Degree Link ushers in transformative paradigm starting Fall 2019

Cleveland State University and Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) have launched a forward-thinking new initiative that will dramatically boost the development of a college-going culture, significantly broaden access to higher education and make it easier for all to obtain a college degree.The program will also boost the efforts of Cleveland’s recently announced Say Yes to Education initiative, which works to put a college degree within reach of urban high school graduates.

Beginning with the Fall 2019 semester, Degree Link will:

  • Allow for dual admissions – CSU & Tri-C from day 1
  • Commit dedicated resources in CMSD high schools to guide students to Degree Link. 
  • Allow students to register seamlessly for classes at Tri-C and CSU, to take advantage of special events and facilities at both institutions, and to count on guaranteed admission to CSU upon completion of Degree Link requirements. 
  • Provide wraparound services to ensure students are supported throughout their journey. 
  • Make a promise – with dedicated recruiters, coaches and counselors – to get students through.

Degree Link was announced at a Feb. 28 event featuring Tri-C President Alex Johnson and CSU President Harlan M. Sands. It included a signing ceremony for an enhanced partnership agreement between the institutions.

”Degree Link amplifies the power of a Tri-C education by providing a clear path to continued academic success at Cleveland State,” Johnson said. “This partnership takes another step toward creating greater access and opportunity for area residents while positioning them for degree attainment, higher-paying jobs and economic stability in their households.”

“Degree Link is a game-changer,” Sands said. “Numerous students begin their academic careers at a two-year institution with the goal of ultimately transferring to a university to obtain a bachelor’s degree. This program will deliver new and innovative academic assistance and targeted resources to make this goal a reality for more students.”

The expanded partnership builds on the already strong relationship between the two institutions, which saw more than 5,600 Tri-C students transfer to CSU between 2015 and 2017 alone.

This new collaboration is also a significant component of CSU and Tri-C’s efforts to support Say Yes to Education. The initiative seeks to revitalize communities by providing every public high school graduate access to college or other postsecondary scholarships. Cleveland became the nation’s fourth Say Yes city on Jan. 17.

To further opportunities for Say Yes students, CMSD graduates attending Tri-C with an intent to transfer to CSU will be given access to KeyBank Scholars Program support staff and resources at the university to maintain momentum toward graduation. In addition, Tri-C and CSU will work with the Higher Education Compact of Greater Cleveland to introduce more CMSD students to the possibilities offered through postsecondary education, with the goal of enhancing higher education enrollment.

“CSU and Tri-C are firmly committed to Say Yes’ goal of ensuring all urban high school students have the opportunity and ability to obtain a four-year degree,” Sands said. “Degree Link will help arm our students with the tools they need to accomplish that goal.”