Tech and Emory University are collaborating on a cross-registration program that allows students at each school to take courses at the other institution, provided that the course is unique and not offered in some way at their home school.
Institute President G.P. ‘Bud’ Peterson and President James Wagner of Emory have been working on developing this program.
“What we are trying to do is to enhance the relationship we have with Emory to leverage our resources,” Peterson said.
Students have often requested a stronger diversity of classes from the Institute. This program aims to resolve that issue. While Tech has a wide variety of courses in engineering, science and technology, it lacks in many areas.
“We can’t afford to have experts and faculty in every area [of studies]. We can’t afford to do everything ourselves, and neither can Emory. This is a way we can make a more diversified array of courses available to students,” Peterson said.
Wagner commented on the pairing of Tech and Emory for this program.
“One institution is public, the other is private, so we are not stepping on each other’s toes in seeking certain kinds of basic funding. As the State of Georgia supports Tech in ways that make it stronger, the partnerships with Emory benefit,” Wagner said.
Tech and Emory students have had the capability to cross-register at each institution since the program was established in 1999 through a non-profit organization called the Atlanta Regional Council for Higher Education (ARCHE).
Between 1999 and 2010, there have been 286 graduate student participants and 42 undergraduate student participants from Tech. In Spring 2010, there were a total of 19 participants from Tech traveling to Emory for classes. Many of these students are BME majors who participate in the BS/MS degree program. However, Tech hopes to make it known that all majors can participate.
“[This program allows] us to expand opportunities for students without spending money,” said Registrar Reta Pikowsky.
Students who participate in the program will pay the tuition of their home institution. As a result, no additional cost is applied.
“If you’re a Tech student and you’re gong to Emory, then you would only pay Tech. That’s part of the beauty of ARCHE. You only pay the home institution at the home institution rates,” said Jeremy Gray, assistant Registrar.
ARCHE is a network of 20 public and private colleges and universities that establish and facilitate the collaborative efforts between educational institutions in Georgia.
In order to be eligible to participate in the cross-registration program, students must be in their third or fourth year or be a graduate student. Students are also required to be in academic good standing. Students must submit an application to the Registrar, following which Gray facilitates the applications with the cross-registration coordinator at Emory. Both the signature of the student and advisor are required to complete the application.
“We encourage students to work with their academic advisors here at Tech when they’re selecting those [course]…to make sure they’re applicable to their program here and that it transfers back,” Gray said.
Students are able to register for up to two courses a semester, while still taking at least three hours of courses at their home institution. Emory students will have first choice of the classes offered at Emory and registration for Tech students will be based upon space availability.
Through the agreement made between the two institutions, cross registration will only be facilitated during the Fall and Spring semesters.
In efforts to make students more aware of this program, ads will be run in other student newspapers at other institutions and through the Weekly Digest.
The close location of the two schools makes this opportunity more accessible. Currently, there is an Emory Shuttle bus that runs every two hours. If there is a strong response to recent push to increase participation, improvements will be made to the transportation system.
Pikosky describes the partnership between Emory and Tech as natural because the institutions are closely related in quality and relationship, and are closely located to each other.
“I think it’s an excellent idea, allowing Tech student to take college level course at a school like Emory that they can’t get at Tech is a great opportunity for students,” said Anderson Smith, Senior Vice Provost.
Senior leadership teams from each institution will meet every four to five weeks to continue the planning of this program and to continue to foster the Emory- Tech relationship.
“In the long run, one of the best ways to facilitate the positive impact of our collective research and scholarship is to ensure that students have an opportunity to be exposed to and to take advantage of it. Raising the visibility of the program is an important means toward that end,” Wagner said.