NCC launching first bachelor's degree, Cedar Crest an MBA

For the first time, students will be able to earn a bachelor's degree entirely at Northampton Community College while Cedar Crest College students will be able to earn an MBA.

The two colleges announced their new programs this week, one with a special signing and the other hosting a downtown Allentown event with local business leaders.


At NCC, students will be able to earn a bachelor's degree in technical leadership through a partnership with Bloomsburg University.

The technical leadership degree which will begin in the fall, will train students for management positions, especially in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, according to a news release.


Under the initiative, students would first complete 60 college credits then transfer into the technical leadership program. Upper-level courses would be taught evenings at NCC's Bethlehem Township campus by Bloomsburg professors. Students would also take online courses.

NCC will be the fourth community college to offer students a chance to earn the bachelor's in applied science from Bloomsburg.

Lehigh Carbon Community College was the first followed by Reading Area Community College. Last week, Harrisburg Area Community College was added to the list, according to Bloomsburg officials.

NCC currently has a number of agreements that allow students to earn associate's degrees then transfer to four-year institutions. But Heidi Butler, NCC spokesperson, said this is its first foray into offering students a chance to earn a four-year degree on campus.


At a signing ceremony at NCC on Wednesday, NCC President Mark Erickson said the program aligns with the school's goals to expand access to education, encourage students to complete degrees and be a leader in technology.

"It is all about serving students," he said.

Cedar Crest will begin a 36-credit MBA program this fall. Courses will offered over four, 10-week sessions, according to a news release. Each class will be held once a week at night.

Students will be able to work at their own pace, taking one or more courses per session. Students with bachelor's degree in business or other fields will be eligible to apply for admission.

Cedar Crest already offers a dozen post-graduate programs, including seven that confer master's degrees.

The college said it is adding an MBA in response to demand.

"Cedar Crest College understands the special needs of the adult student," said Gaetan Giannini, dean of the SAGE program, in a news release. "Our students actually requested that we start it."

Cedar Crest formally announced its new program Thursday night during a cocktail reception at the Renaissance Hotel Allentown.


The event was co-sponsored by the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce. The college has joined forces with the Chamber to offer a 15 percent discount on courses to its members.

"Education is the great equalizer and the opportunity to offer a discount on an MBA program that will surely give our members, and their family members, a leg up in the business community is a positive for everyone," said Dan Diaz, vice president of the chamber's business and diversity councils.