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Lenoir-Rhyne University High School Scholars Academy creates path to college success; high school students earn college credits while preparing for graduation
Lenoir-Rhyne University High School Scholars Academy creates path to college success; high school students earn college credits while preparing for graduation

The Lenoir-Rhyne University High School Scholars Academy gives academically ambitious high school students the opportunity to complement their study and earn transferable college credits.

According to Rachel Nichols, vice president for enrollment management, high school seniors earn college credit to give them an advance start at LR or another institution after high school graduation.

"Our program provides a pathway to collegiate success," Nichols said. "Because we offer classes on campus, students learn time management skills, advance their critical thinking, and navigate discussions with professors, while having the support and structure of family nearby."

The program, which began in 2007, is designed for high school students who wish to pursue a more advanced academic program for their junior or senior year of high school. Students selected for the program can enroll in English III or IV Honors, plus three college classes in the fall, and AP English and three undergraduate courses that range from biology to psychology to world history to chemistry in the spring. Students have the potential to earn 18 or more college credits by the time they graduate high school in spring 2021 or 2022.

To learn more about the program, LR will hold an information session at 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 24 at Belk Centrum on campus. No advance registration is required.

While this program prepares participants for success at any college, according to former participant Aaron Mahnke, there is also the advantage to have the support of family and friends nearby while doing college-level coursework.

"In addition to the support of family, the biggest tangible benefit was going into college with credits, which gave me a jumpstart on my major and allowed me the advantage to pick classes and housing before other students," he said.

Mahnke, who participated in the program from 2011-12, eventually graduated with a bachelor's degree in business administration from High Point University. He now lives and works in St. Louis, Missouri.

Admission consideration for the program is based on high school GPA, courses taken during high school, SAT, ACT, PSAT, or PLAN scores, and high school or community involvement.

Applications for the 2020-21 school year are due Feb. 1, 2020, and can be found online at lr.edu/apply. First preference for admission will be given to students enrolled in the Catawba County, Hickory Public, or Newton-Conover school systems. If space is available, the University will also consider students from private schools, homeschools, and other school systems.

For more information, contact Jessie Haynes, assistant director of undergraduate admission and coordinator of the High School Scholars Academy, at jessie.haynes@lr.edu or 828.328.7365.