news-category: Transfer Pathways

Stanly and Spartanburg Community Colleges Sign Transfer Agreements for Gardner-Webb’s Cybersecurity Program

cybersecurity laptop

Contracts Simplify Transfer Process for Graduates Entering GWU’s Program

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Officials at Gardner-Webb University recently signed transfer agreements with Stanly Community College in Albemarle, N.C., and Spartanburg (S.C.) Community College for GWU’s computer science bachelor’s program, cybersecurity concentration. These contracts make it easier for graduates of Stanly and Spartanburg to transfer to Gardner-Webb.

Dr. William Downs
Gardner-Webb President
Dr. William M. Downs

“The marketplace demands more and more graduates with the skills to defend against real-world cybersecurity threats, and we’re taking the initiative at Gardner-Webb to ensure a robust pipeline of trained professionals ready for the workforce,” explained GWU President Dr. William M. Downs. “It makes great sense to partner in this initiative with Stanly Community College and Spartanburg Community College because they, too, are committed to the same goal. By making it easier for students to transfer over to GWU and thereby earn their four-year degree, all three institutions are serving the region at a critical time.”

This agreement is offered to Stanly graduates with an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in information technology, cybersecurity. The Spartanburg contract apples to graduates who complete an AAS in computer technology with networking/cybersecurity electives or AAS in computer technology with programming/database electives.

Spartanburg President Dr. Michael Mikota

Spartanburg President Dr. Michael Mikota noted, “The proud Chasers of Spartanburg Community College are empowered through the unique transformative experience we offer to Dream it, Chase it, and Live it.  We pride ourselves in our ability to offer the most accessible and relevant educational opportunities, and are excited to secure yet another seamless pathway for our students to continue their chase in the field of cybersecurity. As the world becomes more connected and the threat of cyber-attacks continues to grow there will be an exponential need for cybersecurity professionals. Malicious actors won’t stand a chance against the combined strength and intellect of Chasers and Runnin’ Bulldogs, and our students will be in a terrific position to both protect business and industries while advancing their own prosperity.”

Stanly President Dr. John Enamait said the agreement with Gardner-Webb fulfills the vision of Dallas Herring, who is considered the founding father of the community college system. “Herring believed the community college mission was to take students as far as they were willing to go,” Enamait stated. “That’s still our mantra today, and it’s represented by signings such as this one with Gardner-Webb. We want to see our students succeed, even after they complete their cybersecurity degree at Stanly Community College.”

Stanly President Dr. John Enamait

The GWU bachelor’s program, cybersecurity concentration, is offered within the Department of Mathematical and Computer Sciences. The fully-online option allows students to complete their degrees in a flexible environment with professors who are accessible and available. This degree provides students with the foundations to identify and protect against digital security threats. They will learn crucial techniques to outthink cybercriminals, as well as the technology to support governments and top organizations in their efforts to maintain and secure data.

The curriculum is based on the standards of the National Security Agency and should prepare graduates for the professional certification tests in the field. Courses provide training in programming languages, operating systems, computer and network security, database management, data communications, and cybercrime. Classes include topics to help prepare students for CompTIA (Computing Technology Industry Association) A+, Server+, Network+, Security+ and PenTest+ exams; however, these exams are not a requirement of the program. Students will graduate with the skills needed to succeed in a field that is expected to have 3.5 million job openings in 2025.

Stanly students who are interested in the program should contact Gonda Watson, Cybersecurity Program Head, [email protected], 704-991-0390.

At Spartanburg Community College, interested students should contact Amber Kreger, Dean of Enrollment, at [email protected].

About Stanly Community College:

Stanly Community College has more than 27 programs of study in health, business, engineering, computers, public service and college transfer. The college also offers programs in continuing education and basic skills and serves approximately 10,000 students annually.

About Spartanburg Community College:

Strategically located across one of the most economically vibrant regions in the United States, Spartanburg Community College (SCC), home of the proud Chasers, is driving the economy forward. Founded in 1963, SCC is South Carolina’s fastest growing public college and prides itself in providing unrivaled access to transformational experiences. Chase your dreams online or at five campuses, punctuated by over one million square feet of state-of-the-art facilities. Join the chase at

About Gardner-Webb

Gardner-Webb University is North Carolina’s recognized leader in private, Christian higher education. A Carnegie-Classified Doctoral/Professional University, GWU is home to nine colleges and schools, more than 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, and a world-class faculty. Located on a beautiful 225-acre campus in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb prepares graduates to impact their chosen professions, equips them with the skills to advance the frontiers of knowledge, and inspires them to make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of others. Ignite your future at

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