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Germanna Scholars agreement makes higher ed more accessible, affordable in Culpeper

Frank Turnage, former president of Germanna Community College, choked up today when GCC President David A. Sam and Culpeper County Public Schools Superintendent Bobbi Johnson signed an agreement that will help county students with financial need earn associate’s degrees before they graduate from high school. Sam pointed to a plaque on the wall of Germanna’s Joseph R. Daniel Technology Center quoting Turnage as saying, “Believe it can happen and it will happen” and thanked his predecessor for laying the groundwork for the agreement.

GCC President David A. Sam and CCPS Superintendent Bobbi Johnson after signing Germanna Scholars agreement

GCC President David A. Sam and CCPS Superintendent Bobbi Johnson after signing Germanna Scholars agreement

The new agreement will allow students at Culpeper High School and Eastern View High School to fulfill requirements for their associate’s degrees entirely at the Daniel Technology Center, without leaving Culpeper County.

Through a combination of dual enrollment and co-enrollment classes taught by GCC faculty members, students in the Germanna Scholars Program will be able to earn credit for classes that may be transferred to four-year colleges and universities, often reducing the cost of a bachelor’s degree significantly.

The Germanna Scholars Program will be supported based on financial need, by available restricted private donations to the Germanna Community College Educational Foundation.

“This agreement will help students with financial need earn a degree and lessen the need for any student to come out of the higher education system burdened with massive student debt,” Sam said.

Germanna’s tuition, currently $139 per credit hour, is one third to half that of a typical four-year college, so families of students working toward a bachelor’s degree often see substantial savings.

The Culpeper County Public Schools will identify eligible students based on financial need and submit those lists to the Germanna Community College Education Foundation. Eligible students may receive financial assistance towards their tuition, fees, and books, in accordance with available funds.

Frank Turnage and Connie Kincheloe at today's Germanna Scholars Program agreement signing

Frank Turnage and Connie Kincheloe at today’s Germanna Scholars Program agreement signing

Otherwise, participating students will pay the tuition and fees set for Germanna by the State Board for Community Colleges. The high schools will collect the tuition and fees from the students and the college will bill the schools on a semester basis.

The high schools will bus Germanna Scholars Program students to and from morning classes at the Daniel Technology Center.

The college will provide Culpeper County Public School officials with progress reports on each student. At the conclusion of each college academic term, the student will receive a college grade for each course in which he or she was registered and such grades will become part of the student’s permanent college record.

The program will begin in the Fall of 2014 with a cohort of 25 students. In the Fall of 2015, a second cohort of 25 students will be added.

Germanna Community College serves 13,000 students in the counties of Culpeper, Madison, Orange, Spotsylvania, Stafford, King George, Caroline and the city of Fredericksburg.

 

Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/germanna/2014/02/11/germanna-scholars-agreement-makes-higher-ed-more-accessible-affordable/