UNC Asheville and A-B Tech Renew Bulldog-Trailblazer Transfer Agreement, Both Colleges Announce Scholarships to Cover Tuition and Fees

A-B Tech President John Gossett (left), Chancellor Kimberly van Noort (right) complete the Bulldog Trailblazer Promise agreement.A-B Tech President John Gossett (left), Chancellor Kimberly van Noort (right) complete the Bulldog Trailblazer Promise agreement.
March 27, 2024

Leaders of UNC Asheville and Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College (A-B Tech) renewed a memorandum of understanding to guarantee admission to UNC Asheville for qualified A-B Tech graduates.

Initially signed in 2018, the Bulldog Trailblazer Promise agreement, named for each college’s mascot, is a direct-entry admission program that creates a pathway to UNC Asheville for graduates of A-B Tech’s university transfer programs. A-B Tech is one of the largest feeder schools to UNC Asheville, comprising approximately 20 percent of its transfer population.

Both colleges are also offering state scholarships this fall that will cover tuition for most students. For students with household incomes at or below $80,000, the Next NC Scholarship provides $3,000 a year to cover tuition and fees for students at A-B Tech and other NC Community Colleges. Additionally, UNC Asheville recently launched Access Asheville, which guarantees full tuition and fees through grants and scholarships for North Carolina residents whose adjusted gross income is $80,000 or less.

“We are grateful to be a destination of choice for A-B Tech graduates who want to continue their education, and we are working to make the transition to UNC Asheville as seamless as possible for those Trailblazers who choose to become Bulldogs,” Chancellor Kimberly van Noort said. “Consistent with our commitment to access and affordability, as well as our focus on career-readiness,” she added, “we believe those who transfer will see a strong return on investment and be prepared to address the challenges we face in our region and across the state in this increasingly complicated world.”

“From A-B Tech’s perspective, this was a great time to renew our agreement to emphasize the ease of transferring to UNC Asheville,” A-B Tech President John Gossett said. “A-B Tech’s university transfer students can save money by starting here and be assured of admission and an easy transition to UNC Asheville upon graduation.”

The Bulldog Trailblazer Promise program will also provide A-B Tech students with access to information about academic programs, faculty, and staff at the UNC Asheville campus who will facilitate their transition to UNC Asheville. The program prioritizes the ability to get admission, financial aid, and registration services early in the transition process, setting A-B Tech students up for maximum success at both institutions.

The two institutions also collaborate to provide the CORE (Connecting Opportunities for Regional Excellence) Scholarship Partnership, which provides qualified students with a full scholarship at A-B Tech for two years while earning an associate’s degree, and for two years at UNC Asheville, while completing a bachelor’s degree.

To participate in the Bulldog Trailblazer Promise program, students must meet several conditions, including:

  • Be a currently enrolled student at A-B Tech in a degree-seeking capacity;

  • Submit UNC Asheville application for admission by UNC Asheville deadlines;

  • Submit application fee or waiver and fulfill all commitment actions steps;

  • Be in good standing at A-B Tech and other institutions attended;

  • Earn and maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 at A-B Tech; and

  • Enroll at UNC Asheville within one academic year (within the next two regular terms) of completion of the Associate’s degree.

Join the program at Bulldog Trailblazer Promise Information Form. Apply to A-B Tech/UNC Asheville scholarships which are designated for students on that transfer path. Find out more about A-B Tech/UNC Asheville Scholarships.

About UNC Asheville 

The University of North Carolina Asheville is North Carolina’s designated public liberal arts and sciences university and one of the 17 excellent, diverse, and accessible institutions of the UNC System. UNC Asheville’s relationship-driven education prepares students for lives of leadership and service with an emphasis on critical thinking, clear and thoughtful expression, applied research, community engagement, free and open inquiry, and undergraduate and graduate programs that address the most pressing issues of our time. Through small class sizes, close collaboration, and high-impact experiences, we are preparing the next generation of leaders and productive citizens to serve North Carolina and the nation.

About A-B Tech

Founded in 1959 in the heart of Asheville, A-B Tech is the largest higher education institution in Western North Carolina, serving approximately 23,000 students a year in Buncombe and Madison counties. One of 58 community colleges in the NC Community College System, A-B Tech offers more than 150 degrees, diplomas, and certificates, as well as a wide range of workforce training and continuing education programs. A-B Tech includes the main Asheville campus, A-B Tech Enka (home of the A-B Tech Small Business Center and Business Incubation Program, Craft Beverage Institute of the Southeast and N.C. BioNetwork), A-B Tech Madison, A-B Tech Woodfin, the Goodwill Center and the ABCCM Transformation Village in West Asheville, and a future location at Biltmore Park West. Learn more at abtech.edu.