Typically the words “graduation” and “guarantee” don’t go hand-in-hand, especially in light of the recent challenges many students and their families have faced with issues like tuition hikes, massive student loan debt, etc. Indiana State University, however, plans on giving its students a better advantage when it comes to finishing college in a timely manner in the form of the Sycamore Graduation Guarantee program.
What is the Sycamore Graduation Guarantee Program?
Starting in the fall of 2012, Indiana State University will give students the option to participate in this program, with the guarantee that if they do not graduate in 4 years, the university will allow them to continue on as a student and take the remaining classes required for free.
What is the Purpose of the Program?
The president of Indiana State University, Dan Bradley, supports the need for the Sycamore Graduation Guarantee upon recognizing that the longer a student stays in college, the higher the chances are that they won’t finish at all.
Other vital reasons the program was implemented include the fact that being in college too long means not being able to get into the workforce actively in order to secure employment.
Other obstacles students face that tend to prolong the college experience is inability to get into classes required by certain degree programs and the need to obtain a part-time or even full-time job along with maintaining a class schedule to earn enough money to afford school related expenses.
Are There Eligibility Requirements?
Incoming, first-time freshmen students enrolling in the fall of 2012 are allowed to participate in the program. Additionally, they must commit to full-time status for all 4 years (30-32 credit hours for each academic year).
To make sure students live up to their end of the deal, they’ll be required to sign the 4-Year Graduation Agreement, which outlines their responsibilities, as well as that of the university’s.
There are other more tedious requirements that must be met, which include but are not limited to:
- Declaring and being accepted into their major program of choice by the beginning of sophomore year.
- Actively meeting with an advisor to create, implement and maintain a 4-year plan to ensure the student meets his/her tentative graduation date.
- Applying for graduation by October 1, 2015 for May 2016 graduation.
What Happens if a Student Doesn’t Graduate in 4 Years?
All measures are taken to ensure that a student has a high chance of graduating within 4 years. If it looks like the intended date of graduation can’t be met, the university will first find out if using course substitutions would allow the student to graduate on time.
In the instance that course substitutions won’t work, then the school will waive the cost of tuition and any applicable mandatory fees for the additional courses the student needs to take to fulfill the graduation requirements according to their major/degree program.
How Does a Student Apply for the Program?
Enrolling as an incoming freshmen at Indiana State University is the first step, followed by completing the 4-Year Graduation Agreement, which should be turned in at orientation or anytime during the first year of school.