It is your responsibility as a student to make sure that you meet all graduation requirements. Your advisor can help you understand the requirements and select the necessary classes. Also, an advising worksheet is available online at myHesston to help identify any missing pieces. But ultimately you are the one who will or will not graduate. Be sure you understand what you need to do to graduate.
Is an associate degree from Hesston really necessary if I plan to complete a four-year degree?
No, but there are good reasons to earn the degree.
- The college to which you transfer may exempt you from further freshman/sophomore general education requirements if you have a two-year degree. Without the degree, your work will be evaluated course by course by the transfer school to see if you have met their requirements. See the section on “Transferring to Other Colleges after Hesston.”
- By meeting the graduation requirements, you assure yourself that you are taking a broad range of courses.
- You will have the satisfaction of completing a program of study and of participating in commencement ceremonies along with your classmates.
- A résumé is more impressive if it includes a degree earned rather than simply two years of college courses.
- Evidence shows you are much more likely to receive a bachelor’s degree if you complete an associate degree.
Do I need to declare a major at Hesston?
No. About half of Hesston’s students pursue specific degrees in aviation, Bible, business, computer information technology, early childhood education or nursing. The other half pursue general programs of study that lead to the associate of arts, associate of science or associate of general studies degrees. This group includes many types of students:
- those who are pursuing a four-year degree and need the broad general courses typically required for those degrees,
- those who are unsure about a major or career, or
- those who take a variety of courses that interest them, rather than following a specific program.
Each reason is valid. Keep in mind that most four-year colleges require 40 or more hours of general education courses, most of which you can complete at Hesston. Focusing on a specific major at a four-year school often does not happen until a student is a junior (with perhaps several courses at the freshman/sophomore level). You can keep a variety of career and major options open by not focusing too soon.