New Agreement Increases Accessibility to Earn a Bachelor's Degree

Administrators at Genesee Community College and Empire State College have signed an articulation agreement to effectively transfer Genesee Community College credits to Empire State College to earn a

Administrators at Genesee Community College and Empire State College have signed an articulation agreement to effectively transfer Genesee Community College credits to Empire State College to earn a prestigious, State University of New York (SUNY) bachelor’s degree. As the first formal partner in the new Pathways Program, graduates from Genesee Community College are now able to define an individual degree program tailored to their unique interests, and with the help of a mentor, make a smooth transition to Empire State College to earn a bachelor’s degree.

The Pathways Program is a new transfer opportunity where Genesee Community College graduates can take an additional 16 credits of introductory coursework at Genesee to support their bachelor's degree requirements. The remaining 48 credits of required upper division coursework is taken with Empire State College through flexible teaching and learning models. Known commonly as a “5+3 program,” students enrolled in the Pathways Program generally take five semesters at Genesee, and three semesters with Empire State College to achieve a bachelor’s degree.

With this agreement, students are able to stay within their community and earn a bachelor’s degree that is tailored to their career goals. Students are also able to choose a blend of online, independent study and in-person study through one of Empire State College’s regional locations, or they can choose to study entirely online. Pathways Program students not only choose what they want to study, but also how, where and when they want to study. With an Empire State College campus in Batavia, Rochester, Alfred, Canandaigua and Corning, residents across upstate New York can now earn a bachelor’s degree with little or no commuting from home.

The flexibility of the Pathways Program includes more than 400 online Empire State College classes, allowing students to continue their studies while fulfilling family, work and community commitments. The joint venture between Genesee and Empire State College reflects a highly individualized approach to degree planning that addresses the varying needs and demands placed upon contemporary students.

“The new Pathways Program increases access to high quality, higher education – meeting the needs of today’s adult learners,” Alan R. Davis, Ph.D., President of Empire State College said during the signing ceremony this week. “It offers the flexibility for students to mix and match what they want to take, and where and when they take it. The partnership allows students to hold down a job, stay in their community, continue to fulfill family and community obligations and still earn a SUNY degree.”

Empire State College offers the following 11 areas of study for a bachelor’s degree: Nursing (BSN); Social Theory/Social Structure and Change; Science/Mathematics and Technology; Human Development; Historical Studies; Educational Studies; Cultural Studies; Community and Human Services; Business Management/Economics; and the Arts. These bachelor’s degree study areas overlap with all of the associate degrees offered at Genesee, but particularly coalesce with Genesee’s Business, Human Services, Communications, Criminal Justice, Liberal Arts and Nursing programs.

For more information on the Pathways Program between Genesee Community College and Empire State College, visit or contact any of the following representatives:



Ed Warzala, Unit Coordinator/Mentor
36 Ellicott Street, Batavia, NY 14020


Laura Lee Jezsik, Recruitment and Outreach Specialist
1475 Winton Road North, Rochester, NY 14609



Career and Transfer Center
Priscilla DiRisio
One College Road, Batavia, NY 14020
585-343-0055 x 6423



Editor’s note: A photograph of college representatives at the signing ceremony is available at

Seated, left to right are: Dr. Stuart Steiner, GCC President and Dr. Alan Davis, ESC President; standing left to right are: Ed Warazala, ESC Batavia-Unit Coordinator/mentor, Dr. Eunice Bellinger, GCC Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs, and Jonathan Franz, ESC Dean-Genesee Valley Center.