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Continuing Focus on Transfer Students

November 6, 2018

To the UW community:

Transfer students make up a large portion of the incoming class of students. In fact, this fall we welcomed 1,075 transfer students -- 784 from Wyoming community colleges and 291 from out of state. We see growth in transfer students as a major strategy to reach a desired student enrollment of 13,500 by 2022.

Obviously, our work with Wyoming’s seven community colleges continues to be a top priority, and I appreciate the work that many of you do to increase collaboration with community colleges, improve transfer for students and otherwise create a seamless system of higher education for Wyoming.

During the summer of 2017, our own Enrollment Management Services opened a Transfer Success Center with dedicated staff to develop and update 2+2 degree plans and oversee transfer for students. Today our staff includes Chicory Bechtel, manager of articulation, and Blake Johnson, manager of transfer relations, who work on articulation and transfer every day.

A recent success was achieving nearly two hundred 2+2 degree plans. These are academic roadmaps for specific degree programs, intended to guide students’ selection of courses while at community colleges and to ensure transfer into the same degrees at UW. Please consult this website for current information on 2+2 articulation plans:

About a month ago, UW hosted the 2018 Wyoming Articulation Summit. About 200 individuals attended the summit, including those who joined in person and several joining remotely. This record attendance was about a 30 percent increase over last year’s participation. Attendees and presenters were from UW, all seven Wyoming community colleges, the Wyoming Community College Commission, State of Wyoming/Governor Mead’s office and Western Nebraska Community College.

One of the long-standing traditions of the summit is the UW Office of Institutional Analysis presenting data reports on Wyoming transfer students. The 2017-18 New Wyoming Transfer Student Overview report is available online at Wyoming community colleges and UW alike use this data to inform practices and initiatives to improve transfer student success.

Manager of Articulation Chicory Bechtel expanded sessions to engage a broader audience of colleagues on important topics surrounding articulation. A few highlights:

  • “Marketing and Promoting Transfer Pathways,” facilitated by two of UW’s recruitment and enrollment specialists -- Lisa Harsh and Dawn Kiesel.
  • “2+2+3 Law Diversity Pipeline Initiative,” facilitated by Dr. Jacquelyn Bridgeman from the College of Law.
  • “Advising and Articulation: Identifying Key Challenges and Needs for Advising Students in the Transfer Process,” facilitated by UW’s Richard Miller and Ben Herdt.

We are so fortunate to have recruitment and enrollment specialists located at community colleges, serving UW every day. Their position descriptions have been revised so they can serve as key recruiters and advisers to students transferring to UW. They include:

  • Troy Archuleta, Western Wyoming Community College.
  • Lisa Harsh, Northwest College.
  • Dawn Kiesel, Sheridan College and Gillette College.
  • Amy Schmidt, Central Wyoming College.
  • Richard Ward, Laramie County Community College and Eastern Wyoming College.

Many were involved in planning and coordinating the articulation summit, and I thank each and every one of them. Additional information may be found at

Laurie Nichols, President


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