New program merges Huntsville historically black colleges and universities together

The Pathways Program allows students at Drake State to be concurrently enrolled at Alabama A&M University, making higher education more affordable.

Posted: Jun 18, 2019 6:04 PM
Updated: Jun 18, 2019 6:05 PM

A new Pathways Program program between Alabama A&M and Drake State is allowing students to save big time on higher education.

Both schools say they have a long history of working together. They'd been planning this program for about 7 or 8 months, and now that the official agreement has been signed, both schools are excited to see the impact.

The Pathways Program allows for students to take smaller classes at Drake State Community College to prepare them for their transfer to Alabama A&M. The schools say designing the program was two-fold.

"We saw a need to address the need for an affordable yet high quality education, and so we wanted to take our collaborative efforts to greater heights," Gary Crosby, the VP for student affairs at Alabama A&M, said.

Crosby said the schools will also help remove any hurdles students have during the transfer process.

"We put together this program so that students enrolled in the Pathways Program can take those first two years at Drake State while concurrently enrolled at Alabama A&M University and still graduate if they're on track within five semesters after transferring," Crosby said.

He said Pathways students will get some of the perks A&M students have, such as counseling services, access to athletic events and the student health and wellness center. Crosby said he does not know of any other programs like this in the country.

"We hope that this is a model for institutions not only in the state of Alabama, but across the country as well," he said.

There are currently no students enrolled in the program, but Crosby says he recommends Drake State students take advantage of it. There are only four majors eligible for this program, but he hopes it will expand to even more.

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