Regents approve associate degrees with the hope of providing new path for CU students to earn credentials

By Staff

The Board of Regents voted unanimously to approve new Associates of General Studies degree programs at UCCS and CU Denver.

The board’s action at the April 27-28 meeting at the CU Anschutz Medical Campus followed the launch of the state’s Colorado Re-Engaged (CORE) initiative, which enables four-year institutions to award earned associate degrees to eligible former students who have accumulated at least 70 credits, but who left college in good academic standing before completing a four-year degree.

CORE provides a path for students to receive a credential for work they have completed. It improves these students’ outcomes for employment, strengthens the state’s workforce and economy, and creates pathways for these former students to reengage in higher education.

From the Colorado Department of Higher Education: “In enacting the supporting legislation, the Colorado Legislature recognized that the COVID-19 pandemic forced many students – particularly those from low-income communities – to stop attending the state’s colleges and universities before attaining a bachelor’s degree. These stop-out students have invested a significant amount of time and money to advance their knowledge and skills through higher education, but do not have an academic credential to reflect this investment.

“Data gathered by the Colorado Department of Higher Education indicates over 25,000 Coloradoans may be eligible for an associate degree under CORE.”

The certificate is designed as a completion award only; CU and other participating four-year institutions cannot market to or enroll students into associate degree programs.

Read more on CORE here.