Oglethorpe creates seamless pathways to serve Birmingham-Southern students

In this challenging era for higher education, many institutions face unprecedented financial, political and social pressures. Unfortunately, the Board of Trustees of Birmingham-Southern College (BSC), Oglethorpe University’s sister institution in Birmingham, Ala., recently announced it will cease operations on May 31, 2024.

“My heart goes out to the students, alumni, faculty, and staff at Birmingham-Southern as they grieve the loss of their beloved college home,” said Oglethorpe University President Kathryn McClymond. “I know there are many reaching out to offer care and support, and we join in offering our sincere condolences.”

“As students consider the options for their next steps, I want them to know we at Oglethorpe will do our very best to support them sensitively and holistically with the academic and mental health resources they need to complete their degree. Following their time in Birmingham, Atlanta is a wonderful city in which to study and gain valuable career experience, and we stand ready to assist with the transition.”

Oglethorpe’s Office of Admission has been working directly with BSC and is listed on Birmingham-Southern’s website as having an official transfer agreement. Oglethorpe posted several customized pathways for current students or those who have been admitted at Birmingham-Southern to continue their education at Oglethorpe.

For current BSC students who are rising sophomores, juniors or seniors, here are the expedited steps:

  • The transfer application fee is waived through June 30, 2024.
  • Students currently enrolled at BSC who have a GPA of 3.0 or higher qualify for direct admission to Oglethorpe.
  • Rising seniors may elect to take a free, four credit hour remote class this summer to help fulfill the OU residency requirement.
  • Those with a 3.6 cumulative GPA or higher (as calculated by OU), will be eligible for the Flagship 50 scholarship at Oglethorpe at the 2024-2025 University of Alabama tuition rate. This offer is renewable for up to three years and requires all recipients to live in on-campus housing.
  • Those with a GPA of 3.59 or lower, who are an international student, or who forgo the Flagship 50 award to live off-campus will still receive standard OU transfer merit scholarships ranging from $17,000 – $26,000.
  • After all Oglethorpe aid is considered, if a BSC transfer student owes more than 2023-2024 published tuition and fees for Birmingham-Southern College ($21,500), OU will award a BSC Grant to bring the amount down to the BSC published rate.

For those students who had applied to BSC had been admitted, here are the expedited steps to enroll at Oglethorpe:

  • Oglethorpe’s application fee has been waived for BSC admitted students through June 1, 2024.
  • Those admitted to BSC as a first-time, full-time student qualify for direct admission to Oglethorpe University in Fall 2024. Students simply need to complete an early bird Oglethorpe application following the specific instructions for BSC students and upload a photo of their official BSC acceptance letter for Fall 2024 as part of the application.
  •  Although not required for direct admission, students must send their transcripts to be considered for merit scholarships, including the Flagship 50, which would allow them to attend Oglethorpe at the rate of the Flagship institution in their state.
  • As with all students seeking admission to Oglethorpe, test scores are optional.

To fully support BSC students who transfer to Oglethorpe, designated suites and/or floors will be available within Oglethorpe residence halls. Availability in these spaces will be based on when a student deposits and complete the housing application. After all Oglethorpe aid is considered, if a BSC student owes more than 2023-2024 published tuition and fees for Birmingham-Southern ($21,500), Oglethorpe will award a BSC grant to bring the net tuition down to that published rate.

Oglethorpe will provide dedicated peer mentors to help with any questions or concerns students may have as they adjust to life at Oglethorpe. President Kathryn McClymond will also host a welcome reception during the first week of class for all BSC transfer students, and additional BSC-specific programs will be held throughout the fall semester.

“We feel a strong kinship with Birmingham-Southern, and this cannot be an easy time for that campus community,” said Dr. Rebecca Sandidge, Oglethorpe’s vice president for enrollment management.

“We are committed to making this transition as smooth as possible and making the necessary accommodations in our processes to help them attain or complete their undergraduate degree and meet their career goals.”

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