IDAHO FALLS — College of Eastern Idaho students will soon be able to simultaneously enroll at the University of Idaho.
CEI trustees are expected to adopt a joint-admissions agreement Wednesday, which would provide students with remote access to bachelor’s degree courses from U of I. The U of I announced the arrangement in a news release issued Tuesday.
CEI president Rick Aman said the partnership widens his school’s range of available courses for all students, but is aimed particularly at high schoolers taking dual enrollment classes through the Idaho Falls-based community college.
Many of these students already have their sights on a particular bachelor’s degree, Aman said. The partnership will provide them access to more courses tied to their four-year pursuits.
“A lot of times, students start with a community college and never go on to a bachelor’s degree,” Aman said. “We think this will help that.”
After two years at CEI, students will be able to complete the rest of their bachelor’s degree at U of I’s satellite campus across town.
Dual enrollment students will gain access to advising and email services from CEI and U of I, and pay tuition and fees associated with the course tied to either institution.
Presidents at both schools hope the partnership will yield improved college graduation numbers in East Idaho and across the state.
“This effort will more clearly communicate professional pathways for students and raise the educational attainment rates of the region and the state,” said U of I President Chuck Staben.
East Idaho’s first-year college go-on rates lag even further behind the rest of the state, partly because many high school graduates serve two-year Mormon Church missions. State leaders want 60 percent of young adults to complete college or obtain a professional certificate — but after five years and $100 million, the state remains far from its goal.
Bonneville County voters approved a May 16 ballot measure to transform Eastern Idaho Technical College into CEI.
More reading: This week, Idaho Education News takes an in-depth look at the state’s struggle to improve its postsecondary completion rate.