This year 32 high schoolers from Alliance Charter Academy are attending Clackamas Community College (CCC) to achieve a higher education. One of them is Faith Burton, who is currently in 11th grade.
“I am completely enjoying my experience at CCC,” said Burton. “I really like the level of freedom you get from the teachers.”
The Alliance College Experience (ACE) program was started seven years ago in 2009 by then-Director Lara Fabrycki and then-counselor Stacey Ackerman. This program is for 11-12th graders who have advanced beyond the level of classes offered at ACA. It is offered for students who are ready to experience college while still earning high school credits at the same time. Through this program, students can earn both high school and college credits while still being overseen by an advisors ACA. Some students have even graduated high school with an associate’s degree.
High school is very different for every student. In the case of these 32 students they are experiencing something that most people don’t until after they graduate.
“In high school you really don’t have a choice but to be there. In college the teachers are excited about what they are teaching and it inspires you to do good in the class,” said Burton. “The only downside I would say is the amount of time you spend in class. I would say three times out of four you sit around and have unimportant conversations that kind of waste your time. But overall I really enjoy it.”
The ACE program is one of many things that makes our school so unique and different. It allows high schoolers to get ahead in college while still having four meetings with their advisor here at ACA yearly. During these four meetings throughout the year, students will update their advisor on their progress at the college.
To apply to the ACE program you must submit an application, your grade point average, recommendations from teachers, as well as an essay the year before you’re hoping to start the program. After the directors go through your application and decide whether or not you’d be a good candidate for the program then the following year you’d start your classes at the college.
An ACE informational meeting is scheduled for Feb. 17 at 6:30 p.m. in the ACA library. Application deadlines will be determined at that meeting and are usually about 4 weeks later.