Officials from Columbia High School and Siena College signed an Early Assurance Program agreement on Thursday afternoon in the Columbia library, to establish a pathway for high school students to matriculate to Siena on pace to earn a B.S. and MBA – in four years.
The agreement will allow eligible Columbia students to apply for admission to this innovative program as early as the 10th grade. After meeting the required course requirements at Columbia, students will have the opportunity to enroll at Siena on pace to earn a customizable bachelor of science in business degree, then a master of business administration, all within four years.
There will also be an accelerated track for students to earn both degrees at Siena in three years.
The agreement was signed by Jeffrey Simons, superintendent of schools for the East Greenbush Central School District, and Br. F. Edward Coughlin, O.F.M., Ph.D., president of Siena College.
“This new partnership with Siena College provides just what we’ve been looking for and what our students need,” Mr. Simons said. “This arrangement provides a seamless pathway that begins in high school and leads to a Master’s Degree from an exceptional college and an exciting career in business. This is a win-win for our district, the college, our students and our families!”
Other representatives at the signing event included Michael Buono, president of the East Greenbush Central School District Board of Education, James McHugh, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction at East Greenbush Central School District, Columbia principal Michael Harkin, Columbia business faculty and students and John Bond, an admissions counselor for Siena College, who is also a Columbia High School graduate.
“With our recent introduction of our MBA program, and the way in which we’ve organized our business curriculum in particular, it really becomes an incredible pathway for you,” Br. Ed Coughlin told Columbia students in attendance.
Eligible students may apply for the program during their sophomore or junior year at Columbia based on their past and projected academic performance. Students will need to submit an application, essay and transcript to Siena, and must be on track to complete a required number of academic units in English, social studies, mathematics, laboratory science and language.
Students who are accepted to the early assurance business program will not be required to enroll at Siena or to forgo application to other schools; rather they will be able to secure their admission and reserve a place at Siena.
Siena’s School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB). Fewer than five percent of business schools worldwide have earned AACSB accreditation.
This agreement with Siena follows East Greenbush Central School District’s emphasized focus on college and career preparation. The district has added more college-level courses in recent years, now totaling 22 college-level courses. It also added a new diploma certificate program in Business Administration last summer and formed a new Business Advisory Council with local colleges, businesses and industry leaders to review employment trends, examine skills needed for success and develop strategies to inform students and parents of post-graduation opportunities.
“The board is pleased to be able to support our district’s partnership with Siena College and this new opportunity for our students,” Mr. Buono said. “It continues our district’s goals of maintaining academic excellence and continuing to build educational and strategic partnerships. I want to thank Siena College and our district staff for all their work in bringing this together!”