Grant Allows Salem Students to Receive Free College Credits

PRESS RELEASE - 8/25/16

Grant Allows Salem Students to Receive Free College Credits

Forman S. Acton Educational Foundation grant to Salem Community College helps Salem students get a head start on higher education

SALEM CITY, N.J. - Dramatically more Salem High School students have now received free college credit thanks to a new grant partnership between the Forman S. Acton Educational Foundation and Salem Community College.

SHS students have long been able to get dual credit for completing high school advanced placement courses, meaning they would get credit toward both their high school diploma and college degree. However, few students have taken advantage in the past.

To boost enrollment, the Acton Foundation provided a $36,800 grant that pays for the credits, allowing 91 Salem students to earn credits for courses they completed in the past year—at no cost to them or their families. Because some students will receive credits for multiple courses and some year-long Salem High School courses are eligible for 8 credits from Salem Community College, the grant effectively pays for 736 credits that are accepted at SCC, all New Jersey colleges and universities, and many colleges and universities outside the state.

“This partnership presents an unprecedented opportunity for us to serve students who are high-achieving but may be economically disadvantaged, giving them a better chance to succeed in high school and beyond,” said SCC President Michael R. Gorman.

Research shows that dual enrollment programs like this can improve academic opportunities for students, especially those first-generation college students from low-income backgrounds. Research suggests that participation in these programs can lead to better grades in high school, increased enrollment in college following high school, higher rates of persistence in college, and increased rates of attaining additional credentials.

“By eliminating the financial barriers to these great programs, we’re making sure that the future of Salem’s youth is determined by their own talent and grit, not just how much money they have,” said Kathryn Markovchick, president of the Acton Foundation.

The Acton Foundation will continue to evaluate how the dual credit program impacts and improves students’ future academic achievements. Click here to learn more about the foundation's other programs to support Salem's youth.

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