April 19, 2013

SIU, Harris-Stowe State University sign pact

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale and Harris-Stowe State University in St. Louis recently formalized a collaborative agreement that will benefit students, faculty and both universities.

The Memorandum of Understanding between SIU and HSSU will promote academic excellence and collaboration and foster the exchange of faculty and students.

“SIU and Harris-Stowe share longstanding commitments to access and student success,” SIU Chancellor Rita Cheng said. “This agreement will benefit students and faculty at both universities. In particular, we look forward to welcoming Harris-Stowe graduates into our master’s degree programs.”

The universities will participate in joint academic activities and encourage the transition of HSSU students to graduate school at SIU, with academically qualified students eligible for an alternative tuition rate that is equivalent to the in-state rate.  Plans call for the exchange of faculty for purposes of lectures, discussions and research and student exchanges for study, research and internships.  The HSSU academic affairs office and SIU Graduate School will also work together to identify promising candidates for SIU graduate fellowships and assist with processing their applications.

Harris-Stowe traces its beginnings to Harris Teachers College, founded in 1857 to prepare white teachers for white elementary schools, and Stowe Teachers College, founded in 1890 to prepare black teachers for black elementary schools. Today, Harris-Stowe offers 14 degree programs and enrolls 2,000 students.

“Harris-Stowe State University is eager to develop this most-anticipated collaboration with SIU Carbondale,” Albert Walker, president of HSSU, said.  “SIU’s more than 60 master’s degree programs will give our students the educational diversity and options needed to flourish in an academic environment following undergraduate studies at Harris-Stowe.  We have instilled great professional and academic qualities in our students and we know that they will excel in the next phases of their college careers.  This partnership is one that will be mutually beneficial to both HSSU and SIU.”

Both institutions will appoint representatives to a planning and assessment team that will work to put the plan into action, determine progress and outcomes, evaluable the success of the collaboration and determine future actions to maintain, revise and strengthen the relationship between them.

The agreement is for a five-year period and can be renewed.