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June 9, 2020

Eric Fecteau got a bachelor’s degree in less than three years. Check out his advice for other high school students considering the Degree in 3 program.

Interested in saving valuable time and tuition dollars by earning a bachelor’s degree in just three years? It can be done – just ask Eric Fecteau.

Fecteau, a 2017 Blue Valley West graduate, is one of the first students who took part in Degree in 3, an initiative that connects several area school districts and post-secondary educational institutions from around the Kansas City metro, including Johnson County Community College and the University of Kansas Edwards Campus in Overland Park.

Here’s how it’s done

The Degree in 3 process is as simple as:

  1. Take dual credit and concurrent credit courses while in high school.
  2. Complete your remaining freshman/sophomore credit hours at JCCC.
  3. Earn your bachelor’s degree at KU Edwards.

Fecteau followed these guidelines to a T – and then some! After taking the majority of his general education classes at JCCC and transferring to KU Edwards Campus, he received his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in just 2.5 years.

He says the program can be boiled down to opportunity cost. “Not only did I save money and earn a great education, but I gained an extra year out of school that I can use to get my career started,” he said.

Entrepreneurial to the core

Fecteau was no stranger to the determination and ambition the Degree in 3 program required. While taking classes at JCCC, he worked full-time building his landscaping business.

The business started as a mowing service with friends and grew from there. The experience was invaluable. Fecteau garnered real-world business knowledge and cultivated customer relations and problem-solving skills.

In regard to his entrepreneurial future, Fecteau says, “I enjoy having the opportunity to create my own path and define my own success. I can do more, try harder and always be the best I can be.”

3 pieces of advice

As a Degree in 3 trailblazer, Fecteau offers the following advice to students considering the program:

  1. Be hungry for success.
  2. Take advantage of free time, especially if you’re working.
  3. Keep the ball rolling year-round. Summer is a great time to earn credits.

JCCC’s flexible online classes, student resources and faculty also fueled his success. “By taking online classes I was able to work at my own pace while navigating my busy schedule, traveling and catching up with friends. My professors at JCCC have been a tremendous amount of help and always put their students first.”

Degree in 3 + you!

Interested in expediting your college experience through Degree in 3? Participating school districts include:

  • Blue Valley
  • Olathe 
  • De Soto
  • Shawnee Mission
  • Kansas City, Kansas 
  • Raytown, Missouri
  • Summit Technology Academy

Higher education partners are:

  • JCCC
  • Kansas City Kansas Community College
  • Metropolitan Community College
  • University of Kansas Edwards Campus

You can register for the program as early as April of your sophomore year in high school and no later than December of your senior year.

Speak with your high school counselor to learn more or call a JCCC counselor at 913-469-3809. We’d love to help you succeed in 3!