VIRGINIA WESTERN COMMUNITY COLLEGE 2020-2021 SUMMARY OF PROGRAMS FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS
In addition to the wide range of course offerings available in the five RCPS high schools plus the Burton Center, high school students in Roanoke County Public Schools have several opportunities to become college and career ready through programs offered in cooperation with Virginia Western Community College. These programs are offered in a variety of formats: courses taught on-campus at VWCC, online courses, and dual enrollment courses taught in RCPS classrooms. This program summary is intended to assist students, parents, and school counselors with understanding the options available and knowing where to find additional information. The information presented here is subject to change; for the most current information, please refer to the Virginia Western Dual Enrollment Website (http://virginiawestern.edu), the Dual Enrollment information on the RCPS Instruction Department webpage (RCPS Dual Enrollment), or contact Mr. Riley at 562-3900 x10131.
DUAL ENROLLMENT (DE) COURSES
DE courses are courses high school students may take to earn credit toward their high school diploma while simultaneously earning college credit through VWCC. The courses are taught in RCPS classrooms by RCPS teachers who are also serving as credentialed instructors for VWCC. The number of VWCC credits that a student may earn in a high school course varies from course to course. Many course credits earned through VWCC are transferable to four-year universities.
In order to earn VWCC college credit for DE courses, RCPS students must apply for admission to VWCC. Complete information explaining how to apply explaining the requirements is found on the Virginia Western Dual Enrollment Website. RCPS school counselors will work with students to help navigate the admissions process. Part of the admissions process involves taking and earning a qualifying score on the Virginia Placement Test, administered at VWCC. Students and parents need to know that once a student registers for a VWCC course, he or she is officially a VWCC student and must follow VWCC policies regarding grading and withdrawing from a class.
Grades earned for VWCC courses are a component of student’s official college transcript; students should, therefore, approach dual enrollment courses with the appropriate level of responsibility, dedication to study, and commitment to meeting VWCC deadlines. Students should be aware that grading policies in many VWCC courses are different from RCPS grading policies and it is, therefore, possible for the VWCC to be different from the grade earned for the high school transcript. In the event a student withdraws from a dual enrollment course, it is the student’s responsibility to understand how such withdrawal may impact the college transcript and make sure that VWCC add/drop and withdrawal deadlines are met. Students must also notify their school counselor at their high school of any VWCC course withdrawals.
Final assessments or exams are given for all dual enrollment courses. Students are, therefore, not eligible for second semester exemptions in dual enrollment courses. Unless the VWCC course outline specifies otherwise, RCPS grading policies for final assessments are used for grade calculation: final assessments for first semester count as a test grade within the second quarter and final assessments for second semester count as a test grade within the fourth quarter.
One advantage of DE courses is that RCPS students may earn college credit at a lower cost as compared to full-price tuition. Each year, VWCC and RCPS decide, based on prevailing budgetary conditions, the percentage of tuition that students will pay. As in past years, students enrolling in DE courses will pay the VWCC tuition through their school.
VWCC works with RCPS to determine which VWCC courses align with RCPS classes. As VWCC course content and requirements change, the alignment with RCPS classes will change.
VWCC REGIONAL ACADEMIES
VWCC offers Regional Academies to area high school students interested in pursuing college coursework in specific fields while still in high school. For the 2020-2021 school year, VWCC will offer three courses of study within the Regional Academy program: engineering, mechatronics, and STEM-H pre-health sciences. Courses taken through the VWCC Regional Academies may be applied to the Associate’s Degree if students choose to continue their studies at VWCC in pursuit of a degree. Students should talk with their high school counselor to learn how courses taken at the Regional Academy may also be applied to high school diploma credits. RCPS students provide their own transportation to the VWCC campus. Admission is competitive and applications are due by April 1. Complete information is found at https://virginiawestern.edu/dualenrollment/index.php under “Specialty Programs” or call Dr. Kathryn Beard, Dual Enrollment Coordinator at 540-857-7235 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For the 2020-2021 school year, students will pay 100% of full tuition. As in past years, students pay VWCC at VWCC.
PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS: ENGINEERING AND MECHATRONICS
Complete information, including course sequence, about the Engineering and Mechatronics programs is found on the VWCC website under https://www.virginiawestern.edu/dualenrollment/specialty.php.
PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS: STEM-H (PRE-HEALTH SCIENCES)
For 2020-2021, complete information is still under development for the VWCC website. Below are the highlights for this program.
- This is a one-year program designed to lead into the health sciences Associate’s Degree program at VWCC.
- Classes meet every morning on the VWCC campus.
- Students interested in applying for the STEM-H Academy must have already completed high school biology with a recommended grade of “B” or higher.
- For 2020-2021, there will be limited slots available for the region.
- Courses will include BIO 141 (Human Anatomy and Physiology, 4 credits), SDV 101 (Orientation to Health Professions, 1 credit), ENG 111 (College Composition, 3 credits) or CST 100 (Public Speaking, 3 credits), PSY 230 (Developmental Psychology, 3 credits) or HLT 143 (Medical Terminology, 3 credits). For more information about these individual courses, see the VWCC Course Outlines.
ASSOCIATES DEGREE OR GENERAL STUDIES CERTIFICATE (HB 1184)
Virginia General Assembly HB1184 requires that community colleges and school divisions articulate a pathway by which high school students may work toward an Associates Degree (2 years) or General Education Certificate (1 year) while enrolled in high school. Students meet the requirements for these plans by earning credits through a combination of Dual Enrollment classes, scores on high school Advanced Placement (AP) exams, VWCC classes taken online, and classes taken on the VWCC campus. Each year, VWCC and RCPS revise and renew the agreements that articulate the courses students need for these programs. These plans are posted on the Virginia Western Dual Enrollment Website under “High School HB1184 Plans”. Choose “Roanoke County” under the menu options.
The amount of tuition that students pay when working under an HB1184 Plan depends on the way in which the course is delivered:
- DUAL ENROLLMENT: Students pay the rate for DE classes. For 2020-2021, the student portion of tuition is $43.00 per credit hour.
- ON VWCC CAMPUS: Students pay the full tuition amount ($170-09).