University Transfer Graduate Works Toward DDS Degree

Amber McIlwaine

Amber McIlwaine, a 2019 Stanly Early College and SCC Associate in Science degree graduate,
is now studying at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro to become a dentist.


Albemarle, NC – Stanly Community College (SCC) School of Transfer and Business is one of our county’s treasures. Our mission in University Transfer is to help students transfer to their intended universities having completed their general education requirements for their proposed major at that university.

The Associate in Arts degree and the Associate in Science degree are the only two fully transferable degrees at the College, and they are designed with one purpose in mind: total transferability. Students who work closely with their success coaches and faculty mentors, and who know what they plan to study at the university, can easily select courses that can perform “double-duty” while meeting the SCC graduation requirements. These courses also fulfill the university’s general education requirements of a student’s chosen major. Even students who are not sure what they want to study can take general education classes, meet with mentors and career counselors, and join the Transfer Club to visit universities to learn what they offer.

University Transfer requires students to meet with success coaches and faculty mentors before they can register each semester. This requirement is designed to facilitate communication, address changing goals and needs, and help students make wise academic and career choices.

“This is such an incredible program,” said University Transfer program head Claudia Gresham. “Not only can we save Stanly County families thousands of dollars in tuition, but we can help students adjust to college expectations, decide on career paths, and make better academic decisions.”

Students who complete the Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees report they are very prepared for university expectations.

Amber McIlwaine, a 2019 Stanly Early College and SCC Associate in Science degree graduate, is now studying at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG). Amber is majoring in biology and concentrating in chemistry and American Sign Language; she plans to be a dentist. Through her time at SCC, she learned to set “mini-goals” to help her work towards her ambitious career plans. “SCC prepared me for the university even more than I expected. When I started at UNCG, I already understood how college worked, how instructors taught and what college classes would be like. But most importantly, I already knew how to do my assignments, get them submitted on time and in the correct way to receive a good grade,” Amber said.

When asked if she would recommend SCC’s University Transfer program, she said, “Yes! It prepared me for the university in a different, positive way. You get your toes wet and then you are ankle deep and before you know it, you’re swimming. Those two years fly by and you are so prepared for a university. It’s exciting! Why would you pay so much more for the same classes?”

Amber also pointed out that classes are smaller, there are fewer distractions, and students have more time with and get to know instructors. Students don’t miss out on college life, either. Through competitions with Phi Beta Lambda business fraternity or Skills USA and clubs such as Student Government, Transfer Club, and Global Education, students can hone professional and networking skills and improve their resumes. SCC’s Study Abroad Program allows students to develop global skills and earn class credit; the program will be held in Costa Rica in 2020, where students can engage in a language or ecology immersion. Previous locations have included France, Spain, Ireland, and Mexico.

SCC’s University Transfer degrees can be earned through traditional classes in a classroom or online, so students can flex their schedules around work and family demands. Anyone who would like to learn more about the program is encouraged to contact program head Claudia Gresham, 704.991.0307, or Information about the University Transfer program can be found at