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General Information

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Situated on the southwest corner of the College of the Canyons property overlooking Interstate 5, the 110,000-square-foot Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center has 23 "smart" classrooms, two computer laboratories, six meeting/seminar rooms and a lecture hall/theater. In addition, wireless and video teleconferencing capabilities exist throughout the building.


College of the Canyons parking permits are required in all Student and Staff lots on the College of the Canyons campus. For the most up-to-date information on parking, please visit the Student Business Office Parking Information page.

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While taking classes at the University Center, your financial aid is processed through the institution in which you are enrolled. Most students have their financial need met through federal and institutional grants and loans. Contact your institutional financial aid representative for more information.

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What is the University Center and its mission?

The Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center is an exciting concept in higher education. The Center, one of the first of its kind in the country, is the facility in which partnering institutions offer educational programs not otherwise available to the residents of Santa Clarita Valley. The mission of the Center is to provide immediate access to upper-division and graduate level educational opportunities and coordination of academic support services through its affiliation with partnering universities, and to plan for the future expansion of curriculum/program offerings and enhancement of services for the University Center.

What degrees and credentials are currently available or planned?

A complete listing of current degrees and education credentials is maintained on the University Center web site. As planned or tentative programs become official, those will be added to the listing along with the term in which they are scheduled to begin.

Is the Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center entirely classrooms and office space?

Situated on the southwest corner of the College of the Canyons property overlooking Interstate 5, the 110,000-square-foot-Center has 23 smart classrooms, 2 computer laboratories, 6 meeting/seminar rooms and a lecture hall/theater. In addition, wireless and video teleconferencing capabilities exist throughout the building. The William S. Hart School District Academy of the Canyons is located on the first floor of the West Wing and a variety of COC Departments are located on the second and third floors of the West Wing to include Human Resources, Professional Development, Economic Development, Employee Training Institute and the Small Business Development Center

If a student completes lower-division requirements at COC in a program that articulates to a partner institution, is the student guaranteed admission to that university?

Each partnering institution is expected to work with the COC counselors to insure the transferability of lower division coursework. Provided the student completes the approved courses with satisfactory grades, meets other admission requirements of the partnering institution, and the institutions program is not impacted, the student is given priority for admission and registration.

Does the University Center grant degrees or credentials?

The Center will not award any degrees or credentials. Instead, the participating universities and colleges provide their faculty, grant the degrees or credentials, and award the actual diplomas.

Are only public universities (i.e. CSU or UC) allowed to offer degree programs? Are all partner universities accredited?

Both public and private universities and colleges are invited to participate in the Center. Each university must be accredited by a regional accrediting agency.

When and where are classes held, or are these programs entirely online?

The Center is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm. Each partner schedules their respective class times, with some programs being offered during the day and other programs available in the evenings and on weekends. Classes are held at the University Center or elsewhere on the College of the Canyons campus. On few occasions, a course may require that it be conducted at an off-campus site within the Santa Clarita Valley. Each participating institution determines whether distance education technology is appropriate for any or all classes in a program. An institution may also offer online courses to augment regular classroom instruction. The Center is equipped with the necessary technologies to facilitate an institutions program delivery.

Is taking a course or program at the University Center more expensive than commuting to a traditional campus?

The cost of taking a course from a participating institution at the University Center varies by the institution providing the course, the course level (undergraduate/graduate level), the delivery mode, etc.

Will a student ever have to attend classes on a partner universitys main campus?

Every effort is made by each of the participating institutions to provide the full curriculum in the Santa Clarita Valley. If a student chooses to deviate from the university's planned offerings in selecting courses, then the student may need to complete that coursework at the universitys main or regional campus.

Must a student be admitted before taking classes?

No. Most participating institutions allow non-admitted students to begin taking classes prior to applying for admission. There are exceptions, so it is best to consult with an institutional representative first.

Must a student be a resident of the Santa Clarita Valley?

No. A student must be a resident of the United States or be attending school on an approved F-1 Visa.

Does a student apply for admission or financial aid through the University Center?

No. A student must apply for admission and all financial aid and scholarships through the chosen institution. Each of the participating institutions offers financial aid to eligible students attending classes at the University Center.

Do students participating in a program at the University Center pay fees to COC or the Center?

Neither. With the exception of parking, students pay all fees directly to the university or college in which they are enrolled. Parking fees are paid directly to COC.

Can a student take classes from more than one university at the same time?

Yes. A student can take courses from more than one university by registering at each institution. The process for transferring earned units from one university to another is subject to the institutional requirements.

Will it take longer to finish a degree or credential if a student takes classes at the University Center?

Not necessarily. Most of the programs offer a sufficient number of classes each term to allow a student to move through the curriculum at the same, or even quicker, pace as the traditional campus-based counterparts.

How soon can someone start a program?

Many of the programs offered at the University Center allow students to begin at any time. There are a number of other programs, though, that operate as "cohorts," or clusters. These programs have various start times throughout the year. In either case, it is best to check with the institutional representative or University Center staff.

Can the community use the University Center for other than partnering educational programs?

Yes. University Center facilities are available for use by organizations within the community for non-educational activities. Information on renting the facility is available on the University Center website or from University Center staff.

Where can I obtain more information?

Call the University Center staff at (661) 362.5474 or visit Suite 204N on the second floor of the Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center.

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