Sam Houston State University President, Dr. Dana G. Hoyt and College of the Mainland President, Dr. Warren Nichols signing agreement
Pictured left to right Sam Houston State University President, Dr. Dana G. Hoyt and College of the Mainland President, Dr. Warren Nichols

In an uncommon move that will allow students enrolled in a community college to concurrently enroll in a four-year university, College of the Mainland and Sam Houston State University (SHSU) have signed a Memorandum of Agreement that enables students to have joint admission at both institutions.  Through the agreement, students applying to College of the Mainland while also meeting the admissions requirements for Sam Houston State University, may then apply for and be accepted into the joint admission program.  The agreement simplifies the transition process between the two institutions and provides several exclusive benefits for COM students including, the ability to attend both schools simultaneously or alternately, a reduced application fee to SHSU and access to school facilities and sporting events.

“This is a unique and important opportunity for both schools and especially benefits our students,” said Warren Nichols, president of College of the Mainland.  “Sam Houston State is an outstanding university in our region with more than 50 majors.  We already have students who go there, especially in our Police Academy who transfer there or take their online classes in their Criminal Justice Program.  The great advantage of this ‘joint agreement’ is that it allows students to be COM students while at the same time be Bearkats earning credits at both schools simultaneously.”

The agreement, which is one of many ongoing partnerships the College has in place with area institutions, outlines a time-compressed degree program framework consistent with the College’s Guided Pathways initiative.  This framework provides the potential for students to simultaneously complete a high school diploma and associate degree in four years at College of the Mainland, the baccalaureate degree in two additional years at Sam Houston State University and a master’s degree in one additional year for a total of seven years.

“This agreement with College of the Mainland will bring important educational opportunities to more students in a convenient and timely manner,” said Dana Hoyt, president of Sam Houston State University.  “The road to a college degree is unique to every student.  By 2020, 65 percent of all jobs nationwide will require a higher level of education. We are constantly looking for innovative ways to ensure students receive access to a quality and affordable education necessary to prepare them for the workforce.”

Students accepted under joint admission must continually meet all admission requirements for both institutions to retain their eligibility in the program.  While in the program, students have the option to transfer, alternate enrollment between institutions or co-enroll at their discretion. 

The agreement was formally signed during an event at SHSU on Thursday, September 12.

To learn more about enrolling at College of the Mainland, contact the Admissions Office at (409) 933-8264 or visit

For students currently enrolled at College of the Mainland who would like to learn how to enroll under joint admissions with Sam Houston State University, visit