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Concurrent Enrollment is a great opportunity for students to earn college credit while in high school. Otero partners with 9 area high schools to provide concurrent credit. In many cases, the credit also counts towards a high school diploma.
Eligibility Criteria for Concurrent Enrollment
- High School student in good standing
- Have a qualifying GPA ( per district/ school guidelines)
- Have a qualifying ACT, SAT or Accuplacer scores
- Must maintain a “C” or better in each college class
- Students must apply for and access their College Opportunity Fund (COF) for all Otero classes
Eligibility for Concurrent Enrollment Faculty
The Higher Learning Commission, Otero College’s accrediting agency, strongly encourages academic faculty to have a master’s degree with 18 hours of graduate credit in the discipline area in which the faculty is assigned to teach college courses. Faculty assigned to occupational program courses are required to hold a current vocational certificate.
ASCENT stands for Accelerating Students through Concurrent ENrollmenT. It’s a state-funded program that helps students, who’ve already earned college credits while in high school, pay for their first year of college.
Who is eligible for ASCENT?
- Complete, or be on schedule to complete at least 12 credit hours of transcripted postsecondary course work prior to the completion of his or her 12th grade year.
- Not be in need of basic skills coursework in their selected pathway.
- Have been selected for participation in the ASCENT program by his or her high school principal or equivalent school administrator.
- Have not participated in the ASCENT program in previous years.
How does it work?
If a student (working with their high school counselor) determines that s/he is interested in participating in ASCENT, and if his/her counselor agrees that they are eligible, then the student’s school/district must identify and demonstrate the student’s eligibility to the CDE. Once a student is approved by the state, then that student is free to walk at graduation with their graduating class with the knowledge that they won’t receive their diploma until the end of their ASCENT year.
The following year the student is technically still a high school student (not having received a diploma), so the school/district will receive state funding for that student that it will use to pay for their college tuition for fall and spring semesters at the community college tuition rate. At the end of the school year, the student should contact his/her high school to pick up a diploma.