What is Early College?
The Early College Worcester Program (ECW) is a secondary/post-secondary partnership involving Worcester Public Schools (WPS), Quinsigamond Community College (QCC), and Worcester State University (WSU).
This program enables high school students to participate in college and career readiness activities and college credit course offerings. The activities and courses are offered at the high school or on the QCC or WSU campuses. Students earn college and high school credits at the same time and can graduate from high school with a high school diploma and at least 12 college credits.
The goals of the ECW program are to increase the percentage of students who are college ready, receive a high school diploma, enroll in college in the fall, and persist in college.
Why Early College?
ECW students have the advantage of a smoother transition between high school and the college of their choice. They develop a college-level mentality sooner than their peers, which can help them handle college workloads and balance school and a social life. This will be especially beneficial since many students have trouble adjusting to college during their first year.
What Are the Advantages of Early College?
National studies have found that the greatest advantage for students participating in Early College Programming is they are more likely to:
students who attended about 100 representative early college programs nationwide. Other resources:
Additional advantages for students participating in Early College programming, especially ECW Program, are that students can:
✓ Save Money – It’s FREE
✓ Save Time - Students earn college credits while still in high school and accelerate college degree completion.
✓ Dual Credit - Students fulfill requirements for high school while completing college credits.
✓ Supports - Students have access to mentors, tutoring services, college resources
✓ Free Transcript - Students receive a college transcript upon completion of their college courses
✓ Transferability - Students earn credit for courses that most often transfer to most 2 or 4 year institutions through MassTransfer
Who can Participate.
All Worcester Public School High School students 9th 10th 11th 12th are welcome to apply for the Early College Worcester Program. We are committed to identifying, encouraging, and helping every student who is interested and willing to work hard to enter Early College Worcester.
An unbiased lottery system will be used to determine which students can participate, in order to ensure fairness if there are not enough seats available.
We aim to enroll 9th and 10th graders in a College Readiness course at their high schools, and 11th and 12th graders in for-credit Early College academic courses.
The Early College Mentorship Connection Program empowers and guides youth through the process of successfully completing college courses and preparing for future college and career success. College students serve as mentors and create an open line of communication, encouraging atmosphere, and bonding activities to foster meaningful relationships. High school youth deeply value the role mentors play in the Early College Program especially as reliable near-peers that help them navigate the experience.
WHAT ARE THE PATHWAYS?
✓ Advanced Manufacturing
✓ Computer & Information Technology
✓ Healthcare/Nurse Education Pathway
✓ Elementary Education Transfer Option
✓ Engineering & Biotechnology
✓ Hospitality & Recreation Management
✓ Criminal Justice