Delta College was founded in 1961 to serve the continuing education needs of students in Bay, Midland and Saginaw counties in Michigan. The community college offers more than 50 transfer programs and 100 degree and certificate programs for students. The college serves about 16,500 students and is located in University Center, Michigan.
Study offerings are numerous. Besides offering majors in traditional fields of study like accounting, management and nursing, the college also offers specialized niche majors like information security and technology, wind turbine technology, art and design, digital film production, medical office professionals, welding engineering and technical writing.
Most Popular Fields of Study
The college features an “open-door” policy for admission, and makes education accessible to all students. There are two types of admissions’ admittance. Students admitted under the regular admission label are high school graduates, GED graduates, non-high school grads whose high school class has graduated, home school grads who are at least 17 years old, and those who are entering the United States to attend school and have an authorized student visa. Under the conditional admittance label, guest students from another college or university, home school graduates under the age of 17 and students seeking dual enrollment from their home school or high school are admitted. However, conditional students must reapply every semester.
For younger students, this is a Dual Enrollment program. To be eligible, students must be at least 14 years old and attend junior high school. The college admits students for one semester at a time under a special enrollment program. The program serves as a supplement for an individual student’s academic program. The program also allows students who are younger than 14 years and are able to demonstrate the ability to handle college-level coursework to enroll.
Along with traditional student-aid programs like Pell grants, the financial aid office has a number of special opportunities for students to finance their education. The Delta College Foundation exists to help support financial aid needs at the institution. The Foundation provides scholarships. Since 1978 it has raised $70 million.
Overall, about 60 percent of students receive financial aid, with a total amount of more than $33 million being awarded. The school also has a interest-free payment plan for students. There are a number of local and school-based scholarships for students. Those include: The Nickless Family Scholarship, Nursing Scholarships, Saginaw County Medical Society Alliance/Foundation Scholarship, the Bay Area Community Foundation, Saginaw Community Foundation and the Midland Area Community Foundation.
More students attend school part-time (57 percent) than full-time, and a majority of the students take both day and evening classes. There is an online educational program, and about 5 percent of the students take advantage of it. More than half of the student body is female (54 percent), and about a third of the students are aged 20-24, with about about 30 percent being ages 19 and under. About 80 percent of its students come from Saginaw, Bay and Midland counties in Michigan.
There are a number of clubs available on campus. Those range from the American Marketing Association to the Black Student Union, and the French Club to the Dental Assisting Student Society.
Student Enrollment Demographics
The athletics department is a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association, and competes in all sports in the Division II level except one — soccer. Its soccer team competes at the Division I level. It is a member of the Michigan Community College Athletic Association, and has the following teams: men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, softball, baseball, and men’s golf. The college offers scholarships based on talent level.
The Pioneers have won one national championship in men’s basketball (1989), and one national championship in softball (1999). The school has intramural teams in baseball, hockey, dodgeball and golf.
Additional School Information
Delta College has one main campus and three off-campus centers. The Planetarium & Learning Center is in Bay City, the Midland Center, and the Ricker Center in Saginaw. There are also a number of special programs available for students. Those include DC Quality Public Broadcasting, which is a student television station and radio station that is broadcast to more than 1. 2 million potential viewers and listeners. The college’s student-run newspaper is The Collegiate and has been published since 1961.The Corporate Services develops, delivers and administers training programs for local, national and international businesses. The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center is located on the campus.
More than 86 percent of graduates have stayed in the state, and more than 61 percent reside in the Saginaw, Bay and Midland counties.
The college also features a unique residence for its president. The Carlyon Farmhouse was built 130 years ago. It was owned by three generations of the Bauer family, until the college acquired it in 1958 as part of the original purchase of property for the school. In 1980, it became the residence for the president, and now President Donald Carlyon and his wife Betty. In 1999, the Farmhouse was renovated and now is a “special occasion” facility available to promote programs and host special guests and visitors.
At the Planetarium Science Learning Center, located in downtown Bay City, the school has install an electric vehicle charging station to park and recharge electric powered vehicles. The Bay City Downtown Development Authority uses Chevy Volt electric cars as part of its fleet. The charging station is part of a much more broad-based sustainability program the college administers for its facilities.
Accreditation is granted through the National League for Innovation in the Community College, The Higher Learning Commission, the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the Michigan Commission on College Accreditation, along accreditation for a number of different individual occupational academic programs. The college is also a charter member of the League for Innovation in the Community College.
Elisabeth Bailey is a freelance writer and editor with particular interests in academics, food,and sustainability . She is also the author of A Taste of the Maritimes: Local, Seasonal Recipes the Whole Year Round and writes regularly for Canadian Farmers’ Almanac and the National Wildlife Federation. Elisabeth and her family live and enjoy great local food in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.