EHHS Starts New Partnership with SCSU

Credit to Jenni Kinnunen, Mitra Ravaii and Lledó Amorós Arrufat

Interested in earning college credit before you graduate high school? EHHS students now have the opportunity to register for dual enrollment classes at Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU) in New Haven, Connecticut. Students can begin taking classes in the summer. Through an independent application process, students are able to earn up to nine credits total, in which three credits at SCSU equate to one at EHHS.

What are Dual Enrollment Classes?

Before someone applies to this new opportunity, they should understand what they are being offered. A dual enrollment class is an opportunity in which high school students take college classes while still enrolled in high school. The classes provide students with both high school and college credits. The new partnership with SCSU provides students the ability to learn more and prepare for college.

Application Process

The process begins with the SCSU Early College Experience Application. On the college’s website, the class schedule section provides a list of classes available each semester. Before applying, students can view this and see what interests them. The list also mentions whether a class is on campus, online, or a hybrid. However, students can only take classes without prerequisites. The majority of the classes that students will be able to take are worth three credits. Make sure to apply soon, as availability of the classes is narrowing quickly!

Should You Take Advantage of This Opportunity?

Applying to SCSU courses is open to all grades and has no GPA or grade requirements. However, the decision to take these classes is still difficult. The paces of the classes at SCSU match those of real college courses. According to Ms. Michelle Madonna, EHHS guidance counselor, “I don’t think every student can handle the rigors of college-level courses. I think you would have to be motivated, be able to work independently - all the things of a higher level class here, like an honors or an AP course.” It will take a lot of dedication and commitment to be able to take these classes. Yet, there is no right student. If you feel ready enough, then you should seek out this opportunity.

Financial Costs and Benefits

As many upperclassmen have come to realize, college can be an expensive investment. From tuition to textbooks, college students have a lot of costly purchases to make. Taking college courses ahead of time allows students to not only fulfill general education requirements, but save money at the same time. Previous experiences with dual enrollment classes show that the price of a class can save students more than they know. EHHS junior Siya Patel was able to kick start her college journey through dual enrollment classes; “The class is also cheaper than a real college course, which is why it can help students so much.” Thankfully, the cost of these courses can be completely free to students if they decide to fill out the SCSU Waiver Request. As long as they pass the course, students will be able to transfer any of the credits they receive to state schools and more!

Benefits of Taking Dual Enrollment Classes

Although there is a lot of hard work required in between a student applying and receiving the credit, many find that the classes are beneficial. Stephania Korenovsky, a junior at EHHS, was thankful for dual enrollment classes, as they helped her prepare for college. “These classes, from my experience, show me what I can handle and help me long term. Now, I won’t have to take these classes later on and can save my time in college.” Most students find that the classes help them save time to focus on what they truly want to do in college. Of course, these classes can not only help you in college, but even with the admissions process. It shows colleges that students can already handle a college-level workload. According to Dr. Joseph Marangell, EHPS instructional leader, “When a student takes a dual enrollment class, they are already considered a college student at that point; so, even though they are taking the class or credit in high school, they are getting credit at a university at the same time. Showing universities that they are capable of doing that level of work before they start a college class.” Students are demonstrating that they can handle a college course while managing their high school course work, helping many students’ chances of getting into their dream college!

Pre-Existing Opportunities and What the Future Has in Store

EHHS also has a partnership with UConn Early College Experience (ECE) which allows students to earn UConn credits for courses within our school. Students pay $50 per credit for each class. The EHHS Gateway Community College High School Partnership offers students free courses as well. This is open to juniors and seniors who meet a certain GPA requirement. Communicate with your guidance counselor if you find yourself wanting to take any of these college courses!

EHHS believes the new partnership can be incredibly useful to students. There is also hope that EHHS will be able to collaborate with SCSU to have their courses right here for students to take, just like UConn ECE. The future looks bright for any student ready to apply themselves and move to the next step!