Central Kentucky students earn college credit in high school saving time, money | BCTC

Central Kentucky students earn college credit in high school saving time, money

Published on Feb 12, 2020

Girl in libraryLEXINGTON, KY - Bluegrass Community and Technical College's (BCTC) dual credit program allows students to start earning college credits while they are still in high school and provides a path to college or work, saving students and their families thousands of dollars. Last year alone, Kentucky families saved $18 million through dual credit scholarships, which are offered by the state.

"BCTC's dual credit scholarship program is not only saving students and their families money, but it also provides an easier path to college, and ultimately, career opportunities," Dr. Koffi Akakpo, BCTC president said. "Dual credit is one of the most cost-effective education programs available in Kentucky. We are grateful to our legislators for creating this scholarship."

At BCTC, 1,376 local high school students take dual-credit courses, which is part of the commitment to raise college attainment in the community as well as expanding access to career options and placing graduates in the workforce at faster rate than in the past.

Natalie Dellinger, along with 12 other Scott County High School students, enrolled in five college classes on BCTC's Georgetown-Scott County Campus this fall, jump-starting her college career. Not only did she successfully complete her courses, but she also earned two academic honors for her exceptional work.

This semester, Dellinger and her classmates will have the opportunity to earn 16 more credit hours at the BCTC-Georgetown Campus taking courses that are part of the General Education Core within an Associate of Arts or Science degree program and will be 100 percent transferable to public colleges and universities in Kentucky.

Katherine Delgado, a first-generation college student, earned an Associate in Science degree in May 2019, and a few weeks later walked with her senior class at Dunbar High School to receive her high school diploma. "They told me it was possible to complete my high school and college degrees at the same time. I didn't really believe it," said Delgado, "but I did it!"

Through Opportunity Middle College (OMC), a partnership with Fayette County Public Schools at the BCTC Cooper Campus, she was able to take high school and college courses at the same time. Delgado's sister also attended OMC in the inaugural class of 2009. Tania Delgado earned her degree form BCTC and now works in radiology.

While dual credit is available through all of Kentucky's public universities, it is particularly popular and successful for students at BCTC and the other 15 colleges of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS). Over the last five years, the number of dual credit students at BCTC has increased by 23 percent.

According to the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education, dual credit has been linked to higher student GPA's and has a positive impact for minority, low income and academically unprepared students who benefit from being exposed to college courses while still in high school.

Because tuition at BCTC is less than half of the tuition charged by Kentucky's public universities, students take on significantly less student debt than other college students in the state. Tuition for these college classes is greatly reduced and scholarship opportunities are available for eligible students through the Kentucky Dual Credit Scholarship Program and the Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship program.

Learn more about dual credit opportunities at BCTC.