Alabama Board of Education Reaches Articulation Agreement with Virginia College

Oct 4, 2011

Virginia College students from Alabama high schools will now be able to receive college credit for coursework satisfactorily completed at their high school in culinary arts, cosmetology, and interior design.

The Alabama State Board of Education recently announced the arrangement, called an articulation agreement, with Virginia College, a system of career colleges owned by Birmingham-based Education Corporation of America (ECA).

Depending on the eligible coursework completed, this could save students money and time once enrolled in Virginia College, which is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) and has state campuses in Birmingham, Huntsville, Mobile and Montgomery. The system has 16 additional campuses in Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Virginia in addition to online students nationally.

"We are proud of this new partnership between Virginia College and the Alabama Department of Education," said Interim State Superintendent of Education Larry E. Craven, J.D. "This is a historic moment in our state because it is the first time that an articulation agreement has been created between a private postsecondary institution and the Alabama Department of Education. Alabama's high school students now have another excellent resource to use as they transition from high school to postsecondary learning. The potential savings in college tuition cost alone will be a real benefit for students and parents."

For example, Virginia College students in the Cosmetology program could receive up to 18 credit hours for high school coursework, which would provide $4,950 in tuition savings. This would shorten the student's program and allow them to graduate up to a full quarter early.

Students in Culinard, the Culinary Institute of Virginia College, may receive up to nine college credits for a savings up to $2,959 on tuition. Due to the structure of the program, these nine credit hours would not impact a student's graduation date, but would reduce the number of required credit hours in one quarter.

Interior Design students could get up to eight hours in credit, saving them up to $3,120. These eight credit hours would not impact a student's graduation date but would reduce the number of required credit hours in one quarter.

The 2010 placement rate for Virginia College graduates is as follows: Culinary Arts, 83.8%; Cosmetology, 84.2%; and Interior Design, 72.7%.