Representatives from Austin Community College met with Blanco High School students and parents on Thursday, February 2, as part of its College Connection and Early College Start programs.
“The College Connection program provides academic college advising to all our students,” said high school counselor Michele Skillman. At the beginning of the school year, Skillman and ACC representatives worked together to collect academic data on Blanco High School seniors—TAKS results, placement scores, transcripts, ACT/SAT results, etc. These scores were placed into a database file for each student.
On Thursday, ACC representatives met individually with seniors during their economics and government classes, and reviewed their college readiness file.
“College advising is provided for all seniors, whether they are going to ACC, Texas Tech, TSU, or wherever,” said Skillman.
The Early College Start program is another college readiness program that benefits BISD students.
Through this program, qualified junior students may begin taking college courses at ACC, either at its Pinnacle campus, Fredericksburg campus, or online. Moreover, these ACC courses are tuition free. The only expense students are responsible for are books and transportation costs.
“This is a tremendous program should a student choose to pursue it,” said Skillman. “Currently, tuition for these classes is about $1,000 per class.”
“Students can earn up to 36 college credit hours and be classified as a sophomore in college upon high school graduation.”
Senior Maegan Wilson has taken advantage of both ACC programs. “It has helped me get used to the registration process that I will have to do for the next four years,” said Wilson. “It has also given me an opportunity to experience how college classes will be. After high school, I am attending the University of Texas, and will be graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Dance, specializing in theatre design.”
Donna Jolley is an ACC College Connection representative who worked with BHS students on Thursday. She said, “We love coming to Blanco, because Blanco is always prepared. Mrs. Skillman is one of the best counselors we have. The staff and the students are always so good to us, always respectful.”
High school counselor Skillman added, “We got a Gold Performance acknowledgement from TEA. Our partnership with ACC is one of the reasons.”