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Spencer students benefit from early college program

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Program gets middle school students thinking about higher education

By CHRISTINA L. KERN, Campbellsville University

Campbellsville University recently served as host to students from Spencer County participating in an early college program.
The program was for students who just completed eighth grade and are going into high school this fall, according to Dr. DeWayne Frazier, associate vice president for academic affairs.

“The program is designed to offer college credit to this group of students throughout their high school career,” Frazier said. “They take some classes in the traditional dual credit format, others online and some with CU faculty traveling to the Spencer County school in Taylorsville.  The program also has a summer workshop each year called the ‘College Readiness Camp,’ a part of that is the trip to Campbellsville University.”

Ronda Cox, a Spencer County teacher, said, “Many of these students have never had the opportunity to have a conversation about college before now—now the conversation has started. Now that they have had the opportunity to visit a college, it becomes more real.”

“This is a great program because it will help take out some of the fear and trepidation that the students have about college.  This program will help them understand more clearly what will be expected and how to be successful,” Frazier said.

Mary Banet-Fisher, a student participating in the early college program, hopes to become a radiologist some day. She said the program “made me look forward to my goals and the ways I can accomplish them. Now I know I can do this.”

Nicole Bingham, also a student in the program, said she is now looking forward to college and has a better idea of what it is because of her participation in the program. “It made me set my goals higher,” she said.

Mike Dawson, a Spencer Co. student in the program, said he appreciates that the program gets them thinking about college at a young age. “I was just thinking about going into high school, but now I am also thinking more about college—what it would be like and getting a head start.”

The program was an original idea by Spencer County staff.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with over 3,000 students offering 63 undergraduate programs, 17 master’s degrees and five postgraduate areas. The website for complete information is campbellsville.edu.