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Western makes deal with Hillyard Tech, NCMC

Missouri Western is seeking to bring in more students and improve the region by signing a deal with Hillyard Technical Center and North Central Missouri College.

The deal, signed in early October, allows students who have earned a Radiologic Technology Certificate of Completion from Hillyard to earn an associates degree from North Central Missouri College, and then continue on to earn a Bachelor of Science and Technology from Western.

Hillyard’s radiology technical program already required that their students take four of Western’s general education courses, but this deal provides a path for those students to continue on to a higher degree in their field.

Director Dennis Merritt and Adult Education Coordinator John DeLee of Hillyard Technical Center approached Western’s Articulations and Transfer Coordinator Ben Rops with the proposal for the deal.

Rops, who has made many articulation agreements with community colleges in the past, but not necessarily technical centers, believed it would be a good idea to work with Hillyard.

“We really just wanted to develop some more agreements with them,” Rops said. “It’s obviously going to be beneficial to their institution, but with the new agreements developed, this will be very beneficial to Missouri Western as well.”

Students who wish to earn the Bachelor of Science in Technology degree – known as the Allied Health concentration – from Western will be required to have 30 transferable credits from Hillyard. They can do this by earning their Radiologic Technology Certificate of Completion. They are also required to have 35 credits by completing an Associate of Applied Science in Radiology Technology from North Central.

After transferring to Western, the students will have to take a series of prerequisite and core courses in what is now called the Allied Health concentration until they met the minimum of 124 credit hours required to graduate with a bachelor’s.

Director of Admissions Tyson Schank believes that this new deal will not only help Western, but will help to improve the region as well.

“The mission of our university is really to spur the economic development of this region,” Schank said. “This allows [students] a path to achieve another credential to help them advance their career, and if they’re advancing their career, it’s definitely helping out our region by getting qualified students into the work force.”

Associate Provost and Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs Cynthia Heider explained that the deal will not only help to strengthen the region, but will help to refine its healthcare as well.

“We’re so involved with Heartland Health, but there are lots of other small clinics and hospitals in the area that need radiologic techs and want them to have an advanced degree as well,” Heider said. “We really see this as meeting part of our mission to provide that economic and educational support for the workforce.”

The agreement with Hillyard and NCMC is expected to increase Western’s enrollment numbers by providing a clear path for radiology students to obtain a higher degree through Western and may open the door for more agreements with other institutions in the future.

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