High school juniors and seniors in DeSoto, Hardee, and Highlands’s counties will get a first-hand glimpse at what college has to offer at South Florida State College’s (SFSC) new Collegiate High School program coming fall 2015.

SFSC’s Collegiate High School program helps students earn college credits while simultaneously completing their high school diploma. The program expedites educational opportunities, eliminates duplication between high school and college course content, increases the rigor and challenge of course offerings while in high school, and provides free college tuition, registration, and laboratory fees for students. In many cases, students graduate with both their high school diplomas and associate’s degrees. Industry certifications such as business administration and citrus production technology.

Collegiate High School students attend all classes at their preferred SFSC campus while still participating in extracurricular activities at their home high schools. Prospective students should contact the SFSC campus advisor regarding availability of particular programs. Collegiate High School students have access to all SFSC student resources, events, and activities.

Students participating in the program must attend college classes at any SFSC campus for at least one full year. During this time, students must complete at least 30 credit hours during grade 12 or may begin earlier in grade 11 with the potential to complete the entire associate degree (60 credit hours) within two years. All college classes taken must apply toward high school graduation and an associate or baccalaureate degree.

High school sophomores and juniors currently enrolled in DeSoto, Hardee, and Highlands county high schools are eligible to apply. Requirements include parental permission, a minimum 3.0 grade-point average, and college ready scores on all sections of the Postsecondary Education Readiness Test (PERT), ACT, or SAT. Students must see their high school guidance counselor to verify eligibility, select appropriate courses, and approve the application for submission to SFSC.

Information packets and applications for admission are available at any SFSC campus, in the Highlands Campus Registrar’s Office, or in high school guidance offices. The application deadline for admission is June 15, 2015.

Once a student has determined eligibility, he or she must meet with an SFSC advisor to determine a major, establish a degree plan, and then register for an orientation session at SFSC.

SFSC will host information sessions for prospective students at each campus throughout the year. SFSC’s Lake Placid Center will host an information session for Lake Placid High School students on Wednesday, March 25, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m., in Room 124. Lake Placid High School students must register with their high school guidance counselor by March 11. For more information on upcoming Collegiate High School information sessions at SFSC’s DeSoto Campus, call 863-993-1757; SFSC’s Hardee Campus, 863-784-7061; SFSC’s Lake Placid Center, 863-784-7083; and SFSC’s Highlands Campus, 863-784-7329.

For more information on SFSC’s Collegiate High School program, contact Dr. Kimberly Batty-Herbert, dean of arts and sciences, at 863-784-7329, battyhek@southflorida.edu, or visit http://www.southflorida.edu/future-students/dual-enrollment.