GPC sees increase in dual enrollment

Photo by Howard Reed

Photo by Howard Reed

COVINGTON -- Georgia Perimeter College continues to see an increasing amount of students in its dual enrollment programs, and officials expect even more growth with new course offerings.

Currently, 130 students are enrolled in the dual enrollment program at GPC's Newton Campus, and that figure is up 40 percent from last spring. College-wide, 800 students are enrolled in the program.

"We are up more because we are fortunate to have close relationships with counselors (at the high schools)," said Jeff Meadors, coordinator for dual enrollment at GPC.

In Newton County, 24 Eastside High School students are taking dual enrollment courses, 14 from Newton High School and 10 from Alcovy High School. In Rockdale County, 31 Heritage High School students are part of the program, nine at Salem High School and four at Rockdale County High School, including one student from the Magnet School for Science and Technology.

Meadors said that more than 60 percent of the students are taking honors courses.

Students from neighboring Jasper and Walton counties also are taking advantage of this program. In the area, GPC offers dual enrollment at its Newton Campus, a Rockdale satellite center at the Rockdale Career Academy and online.

This year, students can participate in Dual Enrollment through the ACCEL program -- which is funded through the Georgia Student Finance Commission, pulls from HOPE hours and allows students to be enrolled part-time or full-time at GPC -- or the Move On When Ready program, which requires students to be enrolled in classes full-time at a post-secondary institution without taking classes at their high schools, doesn't provide full funding and doesn't pull from their HOPE hours.

In either, students can take courses in various English, math, science, history and foreign language classes, among others. Move on When Ready was created through House Bill 149.

Meadors reported that GPC's Newton campus has the largest amount of student enrollment college-wide for the MOWR program. This spring, 20 students are enrolled in the program at the Newton campus; only 35 are enrolled in it throughout each GPC campus combined.

He said those numbers may increase next year, when more courses will be offered to dual enrollment students at GPC. Students in the ACCEL program will be able to take American Literature and philosophy, in addition to several other core classes that already are offered. MOWR students also will be able to take electives like art, health, physical education and computer science, among others.

"I think it's going to have an effect more so in the fall of 2011, than right now," Meadors said.

The enrollment deadline for January already has passed for the dual enrollment program, but students can start getting more information now in order to apply by July 1 for the fall deadline.

High school juniors and seniors with at least a 3.0 Grade Point Average and an SAT score of 970 or an ACT score of 20 are eligible to be in the program.

GPC will hold a dual enrollment informational session open to the public from 6 to 8 p.m. Jan. 27 at the Rockdale Career Academy, which is located at 1064 Culpepper Drive, off Parker Road, in Conyers. It held one in Newton County in the fall.

More information about dual enrollment and applying to GPC is available by contacting Meadors at Jeff.Meadors@gpc.edu or 770-278-1309 or visiting www.gpc.edu/dualenrollment.