Great Plains College signs agreement with Edwards School of Business
Students from southwest Saskatchewan will have a new option this fall to start their business studies at the University of Saskatchewan while attending class at Great Plains College in Swift Current.
Great Plains College and four other Saskatchewan regional colleges (Cumberland, North West, Northlands, and Parkland College) have signed a memorandum of understanding with the Edwards School of Business at the University of Saskatchewan.
The agreement will allow students to complete the first year of their four-year Bachelor of Commerce (B.Comm) program at one of the five regional colleges.
Margaret Schafer, the coordinator of the business program at Great Plains College, felt the agreement is significant for the college and for students who want to pursue business studies.
“Before students had to make a choice and now this might make choices easier for students,” she said. “They can apply directly to Edwards, be able to get their scholarships and maintain their seat in the college, and be able to move on in year two. So I think it's a positive agreement for the college.”
Students can already take their first-year options for a university degree in agriculture, arts and science, education and nursing at Great Plains College.
This agreement will make it possible for students to complete the first year of their Edwards School of Business program at the college through a combination of face-to-face classes and online course work.
“In the past, anybody who wanted to be in the Edwards School of Business had to go directly to Saskatoon and in order to start your first year here, they had to be in arts and science,” she explained.
“So some students would have to make the choice whether they wanted to be an Edwards student and go to Saskatoon, or start in arts and science and then apply to Edwards. This gives students the option of applying directly to Edwards and being able to attend on our campus right away.”
Students are admitted directly into the B.Comm. program at
Edwards School of Business and they will have access to 30 credit units of courses during their first year of study at Great Plains College.
“If they go with the recommended year from Edwards, they can take three face-to-face classes with us,” Schafer said. “The rest will be online. They would be regular art classes, so any of our social science or humanities classes that we offer. They could also take a science if they wanted to. The rest would be online from Edwards, at least for now. This is something we may explore further.”
The college will be able to implement this memorandum of understanding with the use of existing resources, and no additional staff will be required.
“Our advising will be the same, we'll discuss the program with the students, we'll have them register and guide them through their first year,” she said. “So it is not a significant change for us.”
This option to start the first year of their Edwards business program at the college might appeal to students who require a flexible approach to their studies.
“Sometimes people have things going on and starting here would be advantageous for them in that regard,” she said.
“They would be in three of our arts classes and so they would have the benefits of assistance here and working that way, and kind of learning how to do university classes. Some students like online learning and so this might fit into something they're happy to do.”
Another benefit of this agreement will be that students who start the first year of the B.Comm. program at the college will already have access to scholarships that are available to Edwards School of Business students.
The next starting date for this business program is September 2019 and the application deadline is May 1.
“Admissions are done directly with Edwards,” Schafer noted.
“Students can then apply to us as well and be able to work with our advisor to help them with registration and get them set up.”
For more information about the B.Comm. program at Edwards School of Business, visit the business program's website at www. edwards. usask. ca/ programs/ undergrad/