Turns out it doesn’t really work out that well. According to an article by Dan McFeely in the Indianapolis Star:
The community college promise is simple: Take two years at Ivy Tech, where classes are cheaper, then transfer to the university of your choice to finish a four-year degree.
The reality is not so simple: Class credits don’t always transfer because some public universities are not accepting them. The reasons why are many, but the state’s push in 2005 to turn Ivy Tech into a two-year feeder college — and the overwhelming response from students taking advantage of that goal — has exposed a number of systemic failings.
Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana is one of America’s largest and most influential community colleges. The state of Indiana deliberately works to make the school a promising start to a college career for everyone. The trouble is that while Ivy Tech has a lot of college credit agreements with various Indiana colleges (500 agreements with 65 colleges), there are no official standards for courses.
There are “agreements” but they’re really more like promises; they’re not binding. Even when students finish Ivy Tech and successfully transfer to a traditional college they often have to retake classes, which are more expensive in four-year schools.