Virginia Western to offer free dual enrollment courses at area high schools.
Students will receive transferrable college credits while earning their high school diplomas.
Virginia Western Community College announces that it will offer dual enrollment (college credit) courses at high schools in its service region for free beginning in the 2013-14 academic year.
Students at public hi gh schools in Botetourt County, Craig County, Franklin County, Roanoke City, Roanoke County and Salem City will be eligible to enroll in these courses.
Dual enrollment classes are taught at local high schools by teachers who are credentialed to instruct at the college level.
If a student receives a C-grade or better, he or she will receive transferable college credits for the class. Students may be able to earn an Associate's Degree at the same time they earn a high school diploma.
"We are very excited to offer this pathway to higher education for our region's high school students," said Dr. Robert H. Sandel, President of Virginia Western. "I've always believed that money should not be a barrier to achieving a strong education. Through this program and the partnerships with local high schools, we're making a college education more accessible and affordable than ever before."
The funding for students taking dual enrollment courses will be provided by Virginia Western. The availability of courses at each high school will depend on the number of enrollment requests as well as the availability of credentialed staff at each school.
"Whether students earn an Associate's Degree while in high school or not, dual enrollment courses will mean significant cost savings to students and their families," said Dr. Elizabeth Wilmer, Interim Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at Virginia Western. "We hope many of these students continue their college education at Virginia Western, but those who go straight to four-year colleges or universities after high school will be able to begin a step ahead."
In addition to dual enrollment, Virginia Western is embarking on an extensive initiative involving career and technical education programs and courses. These programs and courses are related to various occupations which require one to two years of training and will allow students to go to work immediately after their training is completed. Even more importantly, most of these career and technical programs are designed to allow students to move into a career pathway which will lead to two-year and four-year college training programs. The Virginia Western Regional Academy for Advanced Technology will offer a variety of advanced training programs in local high schools and at the center itself on the College's campus.
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