One year after Austin Community College opened its Elgin Campus, the college is helping hundreds of students from Bastrop County and the surrounding area prepare for college and careers.
More than 150 students from the Elgin, Bastrop, and Manor school districts are getting a jump on higher education through Early College High School (ECHS) programs offered in partnership with ACC. Students can begin the program as early as their freshman year; junior- and senior-level courses are taught at the Elgin Campus. All students in the program can take advantage of the Elgin Campus advising services, Library, Learning Labs, and free tutoring.
“We’ve just seen such a great commitment from the principals and counselors. They’re serious about being early college high schools,” says Stephen Clifton, ECHS program manager for the three school districts. He adds that students also have embraced the program, even when it means giving up some extracurricular activities to participate.
The Elgin Campus also is home to ACC’s Veterinary Technology Program, which accepted its first cohort this fall. Program Chair Dr. Kerry Coombs says response to the program has been strong and enrollment is near capacity.
“The students have worked hard to prepare themselves to get into the program, and we have been working hard to get curriculum and facilities ready,” Coombs says. “We have high hopes and expectations for the program and hope to be able to serve the veterinary and animal-owning public of the Austin area.”
Applications for fall are closed; however, students can take prerequisite courses at any ACC campus. Applications for fall 2015 program admission will be available in October.
Students will be able to take courses to earn a certificate in Sustainable Agricultural Entrepreneurship or Sustainable Vegetable Production at the Elgin Campus in spring 2015. The courses, offered through ACC’s Continuing Education Division, teach the knowledge and skills needed to successfully start and operate an agricultural business. The program is designed to evolve to become a credit-awarding program.
“It’s been a great year. There is still a lot to look forward to.” — Campus Manager Betsy Erwin
ACC plans to expand the Elgin Campus with a workforce training center to support the Vet Tech and Sustainable Agricultural Entrepreneurship programs. The center is among the projects included in the November 2014 Bond and Tax Cap Election.
View the Elgin Campus webpage for information about campus program, events, and resources.
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