administrators at a table
The new agreement makes pursuing a BS in Criminal Justice a smooth process for BCCC students. Pictured (left to right): Crystal Watts, BCCC Lead Professor for Criminal Justice Technology; Dr. Jay Sullivan, BCCC VP of Academic Affairs; Dr. Heidi Bonner, ECU Chair of Department of Criminal Justice; Ben Morris, BCCC Dean of Business, Technology & Public Services; and Dr. Dave Loope, BCCC President.

BCCC first to offer criminal justice transfer program with ECU

Students who complete an Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology at Beaufort County Community College can now transfer to East Carolina University to complete a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. BCCC is the first community college in the North Carolina with a transfer program with ECU in criminal justice.

BCCC strives to arrange transfer agreements with universities to help students move smoothly into bachelor’s degree programs. The new agreement guarantees that students do not lose time or credits. Students can transfer 60 credit hours toward their BS in Criminal Justice, whereas only 36 credit hours would have transferred in the past.

For criminal justice students who intend to go into fields such as probation and parole, earning a bachelor’s degree is essential. In addition to the BS in Criminal Justice, ECU also offers a minor in forensics science that may be of interest to criminal justice students at BCCC. Alumni of ECU’s criminal justice program work as law enforcement special agents, police officers, criminal investigators, forensic specialists, intelligence analysts, game wardens, judges, probation officers, correctional administrators, juvenile specialists, prosecutors, victim advocates, asset protection specialists, attorneys, and more according to the program.

“Many of the students who are interested in a bachelor’s degree are already employed in the field, and they are looking for a way to get promoted,” said Crystal Watts, Lead Professor for Criminal Justice Technology at BCCC.

“I want my students to plan for not just where they are going to be in two years, but ten years into their career,” said Watts. “The Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice will open up professional avenues for our students, and right now, they can potentially get their first two years for free with us.”

Since BCCC is currently covering tuition and fees for students qualifying students under the Beaufort Promise, students can complete two years of their bachelor’s degree for free through this transfer program.

“The BSCJ program at ECU provides transfer students the opportunity to learn from members of our award-winning teacher-scholar faculty and take advantage of numerous academic support and extracurricular activities including three student organizations, our annual career fair, and international study,” said Dr. Heidi Bonner, Chair of the Department of Criminal Justice. “We are thrilled to have a new agreement with our BCCC partner and look forward to welcoming new transfer students to Pirate Nation.”

The transfer agreement incorporates many classes from the existing criminal justice technology program so recent graduates may need just a few new classes to take advantage of the program. Previous graduates can contact ECU to find out their next steps.

An information meeting will take place on Friday, August 13 from noon to 1:00 p.m. to discuss the two degree pathways for criminal justice technology in the Delmar Keech Business & Technology Building, Room 114. Students should contact Crystal Watts at 252-940-6223 or crystal.watts@beaufortccc.edu with questions about the transfer agreement.