FIU’s new partnership brings high school students to campus

The Office of Undergraduate Education has developed an exciting new partnership with Miami-Dade County Public Schools (MDCPS) that lets top high school students take classes at FIU.

On August 24, FIU’s Academy for Advanced Academics began offering an all-day university/high school experience on the FIU campus for 100 MDCPS students from five senior high schools. Next year, the program will grow to full capacity with 100 juniors and 100 seniors.

“The goal of this collaboration is to increase FIU’s engagement with the South Florida community and to encourage these top students to form relationships with the university and continue their studies here,” said Douglas Robertson, dean of undergraduate education. “We also want to prepare these students to achieve academic success in college so that we can retain them through graduation.”

To be considered for admission into the program, students must have a GPA of at least 3.0 and top scores on the PSAT.

Students at the Academy for Advanced Academics take all of their classes at the Modesto A. Maidique Campus and build class schedules based on their academic interests.

In the morning, the high school students attend college classes taught by FIU professors alongside FIU undergraduates. They stay on campus in the afternoon for their Advanced Placement classes – college-level courses taught by high-school teachers.

By the time the teens graduate from high school, they’ll have completed up to two full years of college.

The Academy for Advanced Academics has a counselor on staff and a mentoring program to provide support to students. In this nurturing environment, teachers, counselors and administrators get to know the students well and understand their needs.

“With this community outreach effort, even the families and friends of these high school students develop an affinity towards FIU and recognize the university’s importance in the community,” said William Beesting, assistant dean of undergraduate studies.

– by Susan Feinberg

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