When Ashley Swanson of St. Charles learned she could transfer from St. Charles Community College to Canterbury Christ Church University in the United Kingdom, she was excited for the opportunity. The 21-year-old arrived in the United Kingdom in September 2012, and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business with an emphasis in international business.
She’s the first SCC student to take advantage of an articulation agreement made between SCC and Canterbury Christ Church University allowing SCC students who get an Associate of Arts degree with emphasis in business to transfer to Canterbury Christ Church University’s Business School.
“I made the decision to go back to Canterbury Christ Church University because I fell in love with it when I studied abroad there with SCC in the spring of 2011,” Ashley said.
After participating in SCC’s study abroad program, and comparing other options, she decided that returning to the United Kingdom was the right thing for her future in international business.
“I fell in love with the culture,” she said. “I had an amazing time in Canterbury. I met so many amazing people, I learned so much, I grew so much as a person, and I’m so much more independent now.”
“The study abroad program is transforming for community college students,” said Karen Jones, SCC professor of English and interim dean of arts, humanities and social science. Jones initiated that program in 2005.
“The new two-plus-two transfer program extends that international experience,” Jones said. “Ashley will benefit from studying in an international environment, including internships in international business markets outside the U.S., experience that international businesses look for when hiring.”
Joseph Hartnett, SCC professor of business, worked with Jones in developing the new transfer program. “The program is a unique opportunity for SCC students to increase their marketability in our current multinational business environment,” he said.
In looking at other colleges, Ashley said she found the program to be affordable for what she wanted to do, and that the application process was simplified. She also mentioned liking the people and the culture, and was happy to return.
“I realized that having an associate’s degree from the U.S. and a bachelor’s degree from the UK might benefit me in the future with my goals to conduct international business throughout the world.”