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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

TXST, ACC introduce guaranteed transfer program

TXST%2C+ACC+introduce+guaranteed+transfer+program
Itzie Pulido

Texas State partnered with Austin Community College (ACC) to launch Bats to Cats, a program that will guarantee ACC students a smooth transfer to Texas State.

Texas State and ACC signed off on this partnership on April 18 at the Round Rock campus. ACC students in the program will have their transcript automatically sent to Texas State at the end of each grading period, receive advising from both colleges and earn financial aid after transferring.

“As the product of a community college myself, I was drawn to this initiative because Texas State wants to be part of the solution to build a direct, seamless, affordable and efficient pathway from community college to a four-year university,” President Kelly Damphousse said in a press release.

According to Gary Ray, associate vice president of enrollment management at Texas State, when students apply for Bats to Cats they have to fill out a declaration form that shows their intention to transfer to Texas State, when they plan to do so and the degree they wish to pursue.

Students who maintain the eligibility criteria specified on the declaration form will be automatically admitted to their declared program for the specified semester. They wouldn’t need to submit any applications or pay any fees and would receive early access to advising.

“[Sharing transcripts] provides [Texas State] with an opportunity for our advisors to work with the Bats to Cats participants to make sure they’re staying on track with the right classes,” Ray said. “It’s important we track that from the beginning of the first semester at ACC.”

Director of Transfer Services for ACC Renee Esparza said one of the biggest advantages is students no longer have to request transcripts and fill out applications as that process took additional time and steps.

Ray said development for this program began in September 2023 with monthly meetings at the Texas State Round Rock campus. During these meetings, teams from both schools reviewed all programs from ACC and Texas State to identify differences in curriculums.

“[We want to] get students through without leaving any credit behind,” Ray said. “They can have the confidence to know that they have support in academic advising well ahead of their entry point at Texas State.”

Esparza said aligning the credits of both schools’ courses is valuable for students and faculty. Her goal is to assure students they are on the right degree path sooner.

“Something I personally hate hearing from students is ‘I took a class and it didn’t transfer,’” Esparza said. “More targeted advising and more specific advising hopefully will draw out students’ aspirations earlier in the process.”

Rebeca Alvarez, an education junior, transferred from ACC to Texas State in spring 2024. Alvarez, a first-generation student, said she felt lost when first looking at colleges and transfer possibilities.

“It was just a matter of reaching out to both sides and [meeting] with transfer specialists from ACC and Texas State,” Alvarez said.

According to the program’s website, in the first year participants transfer to Texas State they will receive a $1,000 scholarship renewable for participants who maintain a cumulative 2.0 grade point average. Participants who transfer to the Round Rock campus will receive an additional renewable $1,000.

During Alvarez’s advising process, she said she was told to watch out for deadlines, but with this new program, other transfers will benefit from only having to submit the declaration form.

“I think it’s a great program for students that want to further their education,” Alvarez said. “A takeaway from my transfer process is that you’re not alone in this.”

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