SC State to Reclaim ‘Missed’ Students

Monday, March 20, 2017

Officials from SC State University announced a new initiative developed to get SC State students who 'stopped out' back on track to earning their degrees from the institution. This latest initiative was announced Monday during a press event held on the Orangeburg, South Carolina campus.

Clark and Jones
SC State University and the University of Phoenix have partnered to offer an innovative solution to reclaim Bulldogs who stopped out from SC State. l to r: James E. Clark, president of SC State University, and Byron Jones, chief financial officer for University of Phoenix, made the joint announcement at a Monday press event.

SC State, the state’s only publicly assisted Historically Black College and University (HBCU), officially launched the Bulldog Academic Resumption Covenant Program or BARC. This program specifically targets SC State Bulldogs, who for various challenges, discontinued their studies at SC State.

BARC is an innovative solution designed to confront the ever-changing demands of providing educational opportunities in a flexible format that is both affordable and accessible. SC State students who use the program can fulfill certain course requirements for graduation through University of Phoenix.

“Sharing the mission of the nation’s more than 100 HBCUs, as well as institutions that comprise the U.S. land-grant university system, SC State University seeks to improve quality of life through teaching, research and service. At one point, the students who qualify for this program sought higher education to increase their socioeconomic standing. However, for many of our students, it is the lack of funding or inability to return to campus that keeps them from or defers their dream of earning a college degree,” said President James E. Clark.

“Today, SC State Bulldogs pursuing 20 degree programs including—business, engineering technology, social sciences and education—can now realize their full potential by taking advantage of this opportunity,” Clark continued. 

The BARC Program is an outgrowth of the unique partnership developed three years ago by The Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the University of Phoenix. 

“We are pleased to join South Carolina State University to assist these students in finishing their degrees,” said Byron Jones, chief financial officer with University of Phoenix. “South Carolina State University, a distinguished institution, and Thurgood Marshall College Fund are serving students in an innovative fashion and University of Phoenix is proud to help them accomplish their mission.

More than 2,500 students, who attended SC State from 2010 to 2015, but stopped out, have been invited to participate in the BARC Program. By accepting the special invitation, the students are eligible for benefits that provide them an opportunity to return to SC State. To make their education more affordable, students are offered a 50 percent tuition reduction. Additionally, the re-admission fee is waived.  BARC students will take University of Phoenix online courses approved by SC State faculty that will transfer and apply towards their SC State degree program. Students may not take more than 24 percent of their degree program courses through University of Phoenix.

“The BARC Program is a progressive approach that is especially attractive to non-traditional students.  In addition, it reflects SC State University’s commitment to increasing the pool of qualified professionals for the workforce in South Carolina,” said Interim Provost Dr. Learie Luke.

He continued, “The BARC Program, along with other initiatives to increase enrollment, complement the university’s current efforts to develop online programs and train faculty to deliver online courses.” 

The BARC Program, which was developed fall 2016, has already attracted the interest of 150 former students. Courses are offered on a rolling-basis which then will be transferred to SC State.

“The bottom line is we miss our students, and we want them to return home. Though it may have been years since their last class at the university, SC State remains the same exceptional university that is committed to their success,” said Clark.

Students interested in enrolling in the BARC Program are encouraged to contact the program coordinator, Dr. Matthew Guah at