The new Collegiate Academy at LEHS is a program that helps students start their college career early and enter college with as many as 50 credits.
The program was originally meant to be half-in person and half-online, but due to COVID, it has changed to fully online. The courses being offered are through North Central Texas College, and students have to pay for the tuition costs, fees, and the textbooks that will be needed for the courses.
“It saves a ton of time but it also saves a ton of money”, says Michelle Gentry, the lead counselor at LEHS. “It’s a lot less expensive to take college courses through a dual credit program than it is as a traditional college student”.
For all four years of high school, the academy would cost approximately 7,000 dollars, whereas in one year of college you’re spending around 20,000 dollars. Students are able to have both the high school experience and a taste of college before even graduating.
“Taking these classes helped to firstly meet new kinds of people whether in the college level or in our own school and made me way closer to my peers in the academy itsel,f” said Ayomikun Taiwo, a student participating in LCA. “Also, going to college doesn't seem that scary when I am already basically doing it. Like the deadlines may seem harsh compared to highschool but I know I'll be fine if I stay on track”.
This year there are 25 students enrolled in the Lobo Collegiate Academy (LCA) most of them being Freshmen and Sophomores. There is no limit to who can join the program and it is encouraged for other students to apply if they’re interested. These students become close and help each other out whenever needed with their college courses.
“We decided to create a couple of leadership positions within the program” says Gentry. “We have a representative that’s our cohort captain for the freshmen group and for the sophomore group and so those people kind of reach out and organize study groups and send out reminders about things that are due.”