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Saturday, March 15, 2014

March 15, 2014

Registration for AP Exams Continues for Ten More Days

 

Students interested in taking AP exams must register for them in the Guidance Office.  Registration began on Monday, March 3rd and concludes on March 24th. Scheduled during the first two weeks of May, these three-hour exams are offered in a variety of subject areas.  The registration fee is $20 (cash or checks made payable to EO Smith) per exam, with the balance of $69 paid on the day of each exam.  For more information go to AP Central.

 

Early Opportunity Scholarships (EOS)

 
Here's how students can earn scholarships of a different sort by taking on the challenges offered right at EOSHS. 

EOSHS has been, for several years now, offering University of Connecticut (UC) courses through the Early College Experience (ECE) Program.  The ECE Program offers several UC courses to high schools in CT provided that instructors teaching these courses are certified by the UC department offering the course(s).  For example, Advanced Economics at EOS is the equivalent of Economics 1202 on campus and is taught by an instructor (Mr. David O’Connor) who has been approved – based upon academic credentials – by the Economics Department at UC.  With twenty-six UC courses in the EOS curriculum (the most offered among all high schools in CT – the average for CT high schools is 5.7 courses), eligible students are granted the opportunity to earn college credits while simultaneously fulfilling high school graduation requirements.  An additional point worth mentioning is that EOSHS ranks #1 in the state among all high schools when comparing the number of ECE courses offered that fulfill the four general content areas in the UC requirements for graduation.  It’s not uncommon for students to complete 10 college credits while enrolled at EOSHS.  Many earn more than 20 credits, and some have acquired as many as sixty. 

To put this in perspective, a typical yearly course load in college is thirty credits.  At UC, a year’s tuition is about $12000.  So, performing the math, thirty credits equal $12000.  For EOS students, the cost is $0.  This is, in effect, a $12000 scholarship (excluding the costs of books which are provided for free to students – an additional $1500 in approximate savings) for any EOS student who earns 30 credits prior to graduation.  The savings could potentially triple to $37000 or more when these credits transfer to a private college or university. There are on average about 25 students who earn at least this many before receiving their EOS diplomas.  Also not included, by the way, is the money saved on room and board expenses.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that a student would have to complete college in three years instead of four.  Rather, the fourth year could be spent on graduate studies.

Most all of these courses are transferable to all of the in-state public institutions and to most out-of-state public institutions as well.  Several private colleges and universities will also accept these credits, depending upon each school’s transfer credit policy.  For more information about the ECE Program, click on this link  

There has been some debate about the relative merits of ECE courses when compared to Advanced Placement (AP) courses.  EOSHS does offer five AP courses (AP U.S. History, AP Statistics, AP Studio Art, AP Chemistry, and AP Computer Science).  With the exception of Computer Science, the other AP courses are also offered as ECE courses.  So, students may still earn college credits without needing to take the AP exams.  Credits are awarded in AP courses solely on the basis of performance on the three-hour AP exams administered in May while credits for ECE courses are given based upon final grades earned in the courses (students must earn at least a "C").  Although the most highly selective colleges do not cast an unfavorable view upon schools with few AP courses (EOSHS, for many years, had none in its curriculum, choosing instead to offer the ECE courses), these schools do expect applicants to enroll in at least one or two and take the AP exam(s) if schools do offer them.  AP courses have been the subject of much debate in recent years as critics have felt that these courses cover content that is "a mile wide and an inch deep", and the pace of the course does not offer in-depth, inquiry-based learning.  The College Board has heard this criticism and is responding to it by redesigning AP courses with less content and more opportunities for inquiry-based learning.

Anyway, AP courses or not, students at EOSHS have several opportunities to start college while still enrolled in high school.  And, in many cases, the courses offered at the school are much smaller than the large introductory classes offered on the UC campus.  The Region 19 School District has made an investment in this program.  It makes sense that students consider making an investment of their own time and energy in pursuit of these early opportunity scholarships.
 

Measuring the Growth and Scope of the EOS ECE Program

 
To put into perspective the growth that has occurred in the ECE Program over the past several years, consider these numbers - 60 EOS students were enrolled in ECE courses during the 1999-2000 school year.  In this current 2013-2014 school year, 292 students are enrolled. 
 
When comparing the scope of ECE at EOS, the numbers are impressive as well.  The Tolland County median for high schools is 81 per school.  The median number of courses offered by high schools in Tolland County is 6 while EOS offers 26.  Finally, the median number of students involved in ECE courses in high schools similar to EOS in socioeconomic indicators is 51 - almost a sixth of the number enrolled at EOSHS.
 
To put the EOS ECE Program into a monetary perspective, consider this - EOS students are occupying 728 "seats" in ECE courses as well as courses on the UConn campus this school year.  With a fairly even split of 3-credit (at $1600 per course) and 4-credit (at $2000 per course) courses, this amounts to EOS students earning the equivalent of $1,310,400 worth of college credits.
 

A Leadership Opportunity for High School Seniors

 
 
INROADS is inviting high school seniors to apply for an opportunity to participate in the FREE 2014 College Links Leadership Summit. The mission of INROADS is to develop and place talented underserved youth in business and industry and to prepare them for corporate and community leadership. To learn more about the Free College Links Leadership Summit, join their webinar via telephone or computer on March 17, 19, or 20 at 6:30 p.m.
 
The College Links Leadership Summit is scheduled for June 26-28, 2014 at the Trumbull Marriott in Trumbull, CT. Students will participate in engaging sessions designed to assist the transition into college and become primed for successful careers through workshops focusing on college survival, leadership, personal branding, and work readiness skills. Students will also explore various careers through an interactive corporate field experience.
 
There is no cost to attend the Leadership Summit. Last year, the program, transportation, hotel accommodations, and meals were funded by Travelers Companies, Inc., and this year additional corporations will be joining Travelers as sponsors.
 

The Leadership Summit is designed for current high school seniors with a 3.0 grade point average or higher and an interest in science, technology, engineering, math, or business, though students with other career interests will be considered. The application must also include a transcript from first semester senior year and one letter of recommendation from a school official.

The application, informational video, and brochure can be accessed under, "NEW ENGLAND REGION 2014 LEADERSHIP SUMMIT FOR COLLEGE BOUND HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS," at this link. 
 



CT State Treasurer Announces CHET Advanced Scholarship

 
Connecticut State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier is launching Phase Two of CHET Advance Scholarship, which will award a college scholarship of up to $2,500 to 100 high school juniors and 100 sixth-grade students.  The application period is from 8 a.m. on March 18 to 5 p.m. on April 30, 2014.
 
For more information, click here.
 
 

UConn Announces Explore Engineering Program

 
This five-day program offered in June on the UConn campus allows high school students several opportunities to explore the various fields available in engineering.
 
For more information and application deadlines, click here.
 
 

Interesting Articles

 

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