Carl Sandburg College Partners With SIU Carbondale to Allow Students to Complete Bachelor’s Online in 10 Programs

GALESBURG — Carl Sandburg College has partnered with Southern Illinois University Carbondale to bring the expertise of a doctoral research university to qualified community college students by providing the option to earn their bachelor’s degrees remotely and at a lower cost in 10 academic programs. 

Sandburg President Dr. Seamus Reilly and SIU Chancellor Austin A. Lane recently signed an agreement for the Saluki Step Ahead program. Established in 2021, the program enables students who graduate with an associate degree from partnering community colleges such as Sandburg to complete their SIU bachelor’s degrees online in accounting, business administration, criminology and criminal justice, early childhood, elementary education, health care management, history, nursing (RN to BSN), psychology and radiologic sciences.

“This partnership with Southern Illinois University Carbondale is a life-changing opportunity for our students who want to continue on with their education but may not have the ability to uproot from their current locations,” Reilly said. “Sandburg is thrilled to collaborate with SIU Carbondale to make this agreement a reality.”

This marks SIU Carbondale’s 30th Saluki Step Ahead pact with community colleges in Illinois, Missouri and Texas so far. Students in the Saluki Step Ahead program pay the community college rate for their first two years. In the third and fourth years, they receive an annual $4,000 scholarship. The goal is to allow them to earn their degree for $25,000 or less.

“We are pleased to collaborate with Carl Sandburg College to provide another option for place-bound students in this region,” Lane said. “If these students cannot come to Carbondale to complete their education, we will bring the experience and resources of a doctoral research university to them.”

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Austin A. Lane                                                 Dr. Seamus Reilly