BEND, Ore. - Students can now earn an Associate of Arts Oregon Transfer (AAOT) two-year degree or a one-year transfer certificate called the Oregon Transfer Module (OTM) while still enrolled in high school, thanks to a new program at Mountain View High School in partnership with Central Oregon Community College.
Staff at Mountain View are working with interested current freshmen, who will serve as the first students in the program, announced this week.
“This is huge. We are thrilled to offer another pathway for post-secondary success for our students,” said Principal Katie Legace. “This option will help jump start students’ college careers and also help save families thousands of dollars in tuition.”
Students in the program will work with advisors from Mountain View and COCC to design a course of study that will allow them to graduate from high school with an a 90-credit AAOT, which is a two-year degree, or a 45-credit OTM, both of which are transferrable to any public college or university in Oregon.
Offering students pathways to earn college credits while still in high school has long been a priority for Legace and staff at Mountain View. The school offers more than 50 courses that allow students to earn dual credits, including a wide range of Advanced Placement classes, Career and Technical Education courses and many more.
Last year alone, students at Mountain View earned 4,600 college dual credits at a savings of more than $400,000. (Students pay $15 per college credit at Mountain View, compared with $100 per credit at COCC.)
Legace says Mountain View students regularly graduate with 40 or more college credits and enter college as sophomores.
“Taking dual credit courses allows students to enter college prepared because they have taken rigorous course work in high school. It sets them up for success in college and careers and they are often able to double-major or graduate early,” said Legace. “And our families love it because they are saving on tuition.”