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Brunswick Students Take Pilot Courses for College Credit Program


While the cost of college tuition continues to rise, South Brunswick High School has launched a pilot program for the state’s Career and College Promise initiative to help high school students earn college credit early.

WHQR’s Michelle Bliss reports that with the pilot offerings, about 30 students are earning college credits in freshman English and public speaking for free.

The school is the first in the county to offer the classes, which are taught by Brunswick Community College instructors. Jerry Smith is coordinator of the center for advanced studies at the college. He says the state program combines several previous initiatives.

“Each of those programs had its own set of criteria for students to participate. So, what the state basically has done is consolidated those programs into one and really made it more of a concentrated effort for students to end up with something in the end other than a bunch of elective credits that may or may not help them for their academic goals.”

Smith says the program includes an agreement with the UNC and state community college systems to make sure that credits are easy to transfer.

South Brunswick High School  Principal Wayne Price says that the school offers Advanced Placement, or AP, courses for some college credit, but this state program will soon allow students to leave high school with up to 44 college credits.

“We’ve had our AP courses that we’ve had in years past in which students could earn college credit if they scored well on the test at the end of the year. This kind of can go along with that, so students really can leave high school with a huge resume and a huge pack of their required coursework completed.”

Last week, the UNC Board of Governors announced an average statewide tuition hike of nearly 9 percent for the upcoming school year.

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After growing up in Woodbridge, Virginia, Michelle attended Virginia Tech before moving to Wilmington to complete her Master in Fine Arts from the University of North Carolina in Wilmington. Her reporting and nonfiction writing have been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, within the pages of Wrightsville Beach Magazine, and in literary journals like River Teeth and Ninth Letter. Before moving to Wilmington, Michelle served as the general manager for WUVT, a community radio station in Blacksburg, Virginia. She lives with her husband Scott and their pups, Katie, Cooper, and Mosey.