JONESBORO – Concurrent students from The Academies at Jonesboro High School will enjoy the option of taking coursework on the Arkansas State University campus starting with the fall 2021 semester, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Jill Simons announced this week.
For years, students across the Northeast Arkansas region have taken concurrent classes at their high schools, but the option to sit in on regular A-State classes as concurrent students is a new program. Morning and afternoon classes will be open for concurrent enrollment.
“We know this is a very impactful way to introduce being on a university campus to concurrent students,” Simons said. “This is the culmination of several months’ work in working out the logistics to open up our classrooms to our interested Jonesboro students.”
“We are excited to partner with our largest local high school to begin a program that opens up our campus classrooms to our youth,” Chancellor Kelly Damphousse added. “We want to show our local youth the value of coming to their local university, and we want to be strong advocates within our local high schools for going to college. We take great pride in our region, and we know that our rising generation of leaders is the key to our future.”
“This is a wonderful opportunity to expand and grow the positive working relationship between The Academies at Jonesboro High School and Arkansas State University,” Superintendent Dr. Kim Wilbanks said. “Jonesboro Public School District strives to continually create opportunities for its students, and this is another avenue to provide our students with an advantage in regard to college readiness. I appreciate the Arkansas State administration and community working with The Academies at Jonesboro High School to expand the academic and educational experiences for our students.”
Along with the experience of being on-campus, the program also provides tutoring services to students taking concurrent classes on campus.
“This is a dream come true,” STEM Academy Principal Dr. Jeff Flanigan said. “The opportunity for many of our students to get an affordable head start on their college journey while immersing themselves in a true college atmosphere is groundbreaking. The benefits of this program will be seen and felt for years to come. I thank Chancellor Damphousse for having the vision to make this happen. I thank Dr. Wilbanks, Dr. William Cheatham, and Dr. Brad Faught for allowing me the opportunity to see this through for our students and parents.”
Students from Jonesboro High participating in the on-campus program must meet the regular admissions requirements to A-State for any concurrent student, which include an ACT composite and reading score of 19 or above. Aspire or Accuplacer tests are accepted, with additional test requirements for subject placement in math or composition courses.
To facilitate JHS students coming to on-campus classes at A-State, a special reduced parking sticker rate of $30 per year will be available, which is a 50% discount off standard student parking at the university. In addition, the Jonesboro School District will provide a bus shuttle service each day on the hour to the A-State campus for its students from JHS.
Simons said A-State is in discussions with other area high schools, and would welcome inquiries from across Northeast Arkansas.
“We know that sometimes locating and retaining high school faculty who are college concurrent qualified can be a challenge in school districts who want to provide the service to their students,” Simons said. “We want A-State to be available for their students as a solution.”