Laurel Ridge and Eastern Mennonite University sign transfer agreement

For Immediate Release:
September 24, 2020

Primary Media Contact:
Sally Voth
Public Relations Specialist
[email protected]
Phone: 540-868-7134

EMU transfer agreement

A new agreement between Laurel Ridge and Eastern Mennonite University creates pathways for transfer students to earn a bachelor’s degree in leadership and organizational management without having to travel to the Harrisonburg university.

After students graduate from Laurel Ridge, they can complete the 15-month, four-semester program, gaining skills in organizational development, team dynamics, human resources and leadership. 

The unique format, in which students move through the program in a cohort of 12-15 classmates, increases academic success and retention, according to Margo McIntire, program director at EMU. The students and faculty build a learning community which supports them throughout their enrollment.

The first cohort, forming for a January start, will take courses fully online until public health recommendations allow for in-person classes. Normally, the program uses a hybrid model: students would attend class one night per week on the Laurel Ridge campus, with other coursework online. 

“This is another opportunity to work with EMU to provide students in our service region with an extremely convenient pathway to a bachelor’s degree that many probably would not otherwise feel is a realistic option,” said Dr. James Gillispie, Laurel Ridge dean of the School of Humanities and Social Studies. “The fact that students can attend EMU regularly without going to EMU is such a great benefit and path to get a four-year degree without leaving home.

“I think this will be a wonderful way for students in our area to get that degree they need to make a better life for themselves and their families. I thank all the people at EMU for all their help in getting this plan ready to roll out.”

David Brubaker, dean of EMU’s School of Social Sciences and Professions in which the Leadership and Organizational Management degree program is housed, noted the collaboration with Laurel Ridge administrators. “What most impressed me about working with Laurel Ridge leadership was their shared commitment to make creative options available to their students and alums in order to strengthen their career prospects.”

Students who have completed Laurel Ridge’s business administration, management, accounting, computer and information technology, and human services or other related programs and meet admissions criteria will be guaranteed admission to EMU’s program.

Additionally, students having completed other associate of arts and sciences degrees or associate of science degrees, or earning 48 or more transferable semester hours, will also be guaranteed admission provided they meet admission criteria. 

Applicants must meet the following criteria: 

  • 48 or more transferable semester hours, 
  • cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher, 23 years of age or older,
  • at least one year of full-time work experience, preferably incorporating some leadership experiences, and 
  • completion of EMU’s fee-waived application process.

Laurel Ridge students who want to take advantage of this opportunity should contact their Laurel Ridge advisor to make sure their academic plans meet EMU requirements.

Students can further maximize their savings by learning more about financial aid opportunities through EMU’s Financial Aid office. Transfer students are eligible for several grants and scholarships.


Founded in 1970, Laurel Ridge Community College is a multi-campus public institution of higher education. With three locations — Middletown, Warrenton, and Luray-Page County — the College serves eight localities in the Shenandoah Valley and northern Piedmont regions. The localities are the counties of Clarke, Fauquier, Frederick, Page, Rappahannock, Shenandoah and Warren and the city of Winchester. Laurel Ridge offers more than 75 associate degree and certificate programs in a wide variety of disciplines, in addition to providing access to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs offered on site by a four-year institution. Laurel Ridge also serves the business community by offering workforce preparation programs for employees and employers. Laurel Ridge serves more than 9,000 unduplicated credit students and more than 11,000 individuals in professional development and business and industry courses annually.

Laurel Ridge Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees. Laurel Ridge Community College also may offer credentials such as certificates and diplomas at approved degree levels. Questions about the accreditation of Laurel Ridge Community College may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (

Laurel Ridge Community College is an equal opportunity institution providing educational and employment opportunities, programs, services, and activities. Laurel Ridge shall promote and maintain equal employment and educational opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions including lactation, age (except when age is a bona fide occupational qualification), status as a veteran, national origin, or other non-merit factors. Laurel Ridge also prohibits sexual misconduct including sexual violence or harassment. Inquiries may be directed to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources, [email protected]173 Skirmisher Lane, Middletown, VA 22645, 540-868-7226.

Laurel Ridge Community College was known as Lord Fairfax Community College until June 2022. For consistency purposes, the college will be referenced as Laurel Ridge going forward.