Portage High School students have more opportunities than ever before to earn college credits while they are still in high school. Through a variety of dual credit agreements, students can earn credits through Vincennes University, Indiana University, Ivy Tech Community College and Purdue University North Central. Portage High School currently offers 38 high school courses for dual credit, and new agreements are continuously in the works.
Dual credit classes are taught by high school instructors at the high school, but students and teachers are expected to meet all college level course expectations. Dual credit students have the opportunity to see what college level studies will be like, get a jump start on their required credits, and save a great deal of money in the process. Some of these college credits are available at a drastically reduced rate of tuition and others are offered at absolutely no cost to the students.
A large percentage of our dual credit courses are in the area of Career and Technical Education. Students can earn free college credits in Early Childhood Education, Computer Assisted Drafting (CAD), Electronics, Health Careers, Welding, Criminal Justice and other programs covering a wide array of interests and abilities.
A new Career and Technical Education course that is being rolled out for the 2013-14 school year is Aviation Operations. In a partnership with Vincennes University, high school seniors who are accepted into this highly competitive program will be able to earn 18 free college credits while learning the ground school portion of pilot training. Aviation Operations will prepare students to become private or commercial pilots, military pilots, air traffic controllers, FAA inspectors and more.
Purdue University North Central has taken the Portage High School dual credit program to new heights this year with its 1 + 3 agreements. These agreements mean that students can complete the first year of a four-year PNC degree while they are still in high school. They can then enroll at PNC and finish college in only three years. Portage’s 1 + 3 agreements are for students seeking a four-year bachelor’s degree in Biology, Business, Human Resource Management or General Education.
Portage High School has another new arrangement with PNC which is allowing a select group of Portage High School students to attend college courses this semester at the new University Center in Portage. The tuition rate has been made very affordable for these students, and the credits they earn will transfer to any college or university in Indiana. Students attend their college classes in the morning and their high school classes in the afternoon. This is a fantastic opportunity for students to get a taste of the college experience without having to travel far from home.
Portage High School counseling staff is in the midst of scheduling students for the 2013-14 school year so there is still time for students to enroll in the dual credit course(s) of their choice for next year. On each student’s course request form, dual credit opportunities are clearly marked. If a student is signing up for one of the following courses: AP English Lit and Comp, AP Biology, AP Chemistry, Pre-Calculus Pre AP, AP Calculus, AP U.S. History, AP French 3 or French 4, and they are seeking dual credit through Purdue University North Central, they should fill out the enrollment paperwork as soon as possible. Students seeking dual credit in any other course should simply sign up for the course and wait for further instructions from their teachers in the fall. In some cases, students must meet minimum academic requirements and/or pass a college placement test in order to be eligible for dual credit.
The wide array of opportunities available to Portage High School students will give them a significant head start as they apply for scholarships, college admissions, and entry into the workforce or military.