Maria Loyd never pictured herself as a University of Dayton graduate, but in less than two years she’ll become one with the help of a relatively new partnership the school has with Sinclair Community College.
The UD-Sinclair Academy was launched in the spring of 2016 and allows students to begin their studies at Sinclair Community College and finish a bachelor’s degree at UD. The agreement between the two schools eases the transfer process and aims to remove some financial difficulties that might prevent students from earning a degree at the private catholic college.
It made the difference for Loyd, who was actually planning on completing her bachelor’s degree at another college before she found out that more of her credits would transfer to UD because of the partnership.
“Honestly I don’t think I would have come here,” Loyd said. “I never imagined myself being a flyer…I’m so excited though that i have this opportunity.”
Loyd is a graduate of Fairmont High School in Kettering and plans to become a teacher after she finishes college. Now a junior at UD, she is on track to graduate in the spring of 2019.
The academy allows students to matriculate in 27 different degree fields, ranging from communications to chemical engineering. Students enrolled in the program but who are still at Sinclair get immediate access to some of UD’s advisers, fitness facilities and organizations, among other things, according to the schools.
Loyd is one of three students who have transferred to UD as part of the academy. There are another 22 or so students taking classes at Sinclair who are participating in the academy.
“The community has really embraced the academy and we continue to focus on offering students the most seamless transition so they are set up for success from day one,” UD vice president for enrollment management Jason Reinoehl said in a prepared statement.
Sinclair has a similar partnership with Wright State University called Double Degree, a venture the community college and public university agreed to continue last year.
As a student in the academy and in UD’s school of education and health sciences, Loyd also gets around half off tuition. The discount was another big factor for Loyd, who attended Sinclair first so that she could afford to pay for college out of pocket instead of taking out loans by attending a four-year university. UD’s tuition is $20,875 per semester, far more than Sinclair’s $99 per credit-hour for Montgomery County residents.
To pay for her classes at Sinclair, Loyd worked at a Starbucks at the community college and continues to work there today.
“Since I had the money it was just better to not take out loans,” Loyd said “Now I’ll have the loans from UD and that’s it that I have to worry about.”
Loyd attended Sinclair for three years before starting classes at UD on Wednesday. At Sinclair she started out as a business major before switching to education, a switch she’s glad she made before attending a university where that change might have cost her.
“Sinclair was the perfect place to do that,” Loyd said. “And, I didn’t waste a lot of money figuring out what i really wanted to do.”