Early/Middle College

The Academy of Health Sciences (AHS) @ PGCC is a Prince George’s County Public School (PGCPS) located on the Largo Campus of Prince George’s Community College.  Opened in summer 2011, this first middle college high school in Maryland represents a significant partnership with the PGCPS.  Students enrolled in the Academy of Health Sciences have the opportunity to earn both a high school diploma and an associate degree in General Studies over the four years of high school through: (1) an accelerated dual enrollment curriculum, which is offered at no cost to the students or their families; (2) a supportive cohort learning model; and (3) wrap-around academic advising.  Fifty percent of the admitted students must be from low socioeconomic and/or first-generation college households.

During the 9th and 10th grades, students take one or two college courses each semester.  They attend the college classes as a cohort of 20 to 25 students and are accompanied by a staff member from the AHS.  For the 11th and 12th grades, AHS students’ primary academic experience is in college courses, where they are enrolled with other college students, although the AHS remains their home base where they maintain daily contact with AHS faculty and staff.

A cohort of just over 100 students is added each year and is comprised of rising ninth grade students who meet specified eligibility criteria representing all areas of Prince George’s County.  The Academy received nearly 4,000 applications for 100 seats for the class entering in fall 2016.  Total enrollment in the fall of 2016 was 432 students.

Results: In May 2015, the first class of the AHS graduated; 90 students received their high school diplomas, and 83 of these students graduated with both a high school diploma and an associate degree in general studies.  Two additional students earned a credit certificate, but all students had earned at least 50 college credits. The 85 graduates were the first AHS students to participate in the College’s Commencement Exercises.

The overall GPA for the class of 2015 was 3.9, and their attendance rate was 98.7%. Every student from the graduating class was accepted into college programs; 88 students are going to four-year institutions, and two students have elected to continue their studies in Health Sciences at PGCC. With nearly $7 million in scholarships, awarded primarily based on merit, the AHS graduates attended over 100 colleges and universities to which they were accepted, some of which include: American, Catholic, Georgetown, George Washington, Hampton, Howard, James Madison, Johns Hopkins, Morgan State, North Carolina A&T, Princeton, Stephenson, Temple, Towson, Trinity Washington, and Virginia State.  Many of these students have now attained senior status at their respective colleges and are graduating in spring or fall 2017, with some planning to immediately enter graduate education.

During the 2015-16 academic year, the average GPA in college courses for Academy students in the 11th and 12th grades was 3.45 (on a four-point scale), and the retention rate was 93.5 percent.  The Academy graduated its second cohort of 88 students on May 26, 2016.  Each of the 88 students earned a high school diploma; 81 students earned an associate degree, and the remaining students had earned at least 50 college credits.  All 88 students were accepted to four-year institutions throughout the United States.  The class of 2016 received a combined $17.8M in scholarship monies.  Notable scholarships awarded include: Banneker Key, Gates Millennium, Myerhoff, and Posse.

In every year of operation, Academy teachers and administrators have been recognized for their outstanding work and commitment to student success and completion.  Dr. Kathy Richard Andrews, Principal, was selected as the 2016 Washington Post Principal of the Year Finalist for Prince George’s County Schools.

The achievements of this successful partnership with the County public school system have garnered the admiration of community colleges and public school systems from throughout the United States that have visited the Academy to study best practices in student completion. 

Building on the success of the AHS @ PGCC, and in partnership with the PGCPS, the College opened the Information Technology Early College (ITEC) with the Chesapeake Mathematics and Information Technology North Charter School in fall 2013.  A second ITEC partnership was opened in fall 2016 with the Chesapeake Mathematics and Information Technology South Charter School.  These programs admit up to 22 rising 9th grade students per year at each location, and offer the students an opportunity to earn a high school diploma, an associate’s degree, and several technology certifications when they graduate from high school. Nine students graduated both high school and college in May 2017.

PGCC and PGCPS are partnering in fall 2017 to open a Teacher Preparation Program that will be housed with the AHS and will admit its first cohort of 50 rising ninth grade students.  The program will scale up to an annual admission of 100 students when the AHS moves to its new space in the renovated Lanham Hall.

Additionally, the College and PGCPS are partnering to open two P-TECH (Pathways in Technology Early College High) Schools in fall 2017.  One will focus on Hospitality Services Management and the other will concentrate on Health Information Management. The initial cohorts will be 25 rising ninth graders each, with a plan to scale up to admitting 100 students annually for each concentration. 

ID 16638

To contact this college about this intervention, take note of the ID above, ID #16638, and then fill out the intervention contact request form

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