updated: 6/1/2010 4:09:20 PM
The first class of Ben Davis University High School students in Indianapolis has graduated. Seventy-three students received both high school diplomas and two-year associate degrees from Vincennes University during Saturday's commencement. A majority of the graduates are the first in their families to attend college.
Source: Inside INdiana Business
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Seventy-three of the 79 graduating students from Ben Davis University High School received both high school diplomas and two-year associate degrees from Vincennes University last Saturday. They are the first graduates from the early college high school in Indianapolis that opened in 2007.
What makes these students so notable is that the vast majority of them are the first in their families to attend college. They have been part of a school designed for students who thrive in a small and supportive academic environment.
“The partnership between [Metropolitan School District of] Wayne Township and Vincennes University is truly breaking new ground to redefine high school for the 21st-century student,” said Dr. Jeff Butts, Wayne Township School’s assistant superintendent for secondary education. “The successes of the inaugural class are truly amazing. The students, parents, staff, and administration are to be commended.”
The Class of 2010 is ethnically diverse and more than half have qualified for free or reduced lunch during their time at the school. “No other school is designed to provide the type of programming and support for first-generation college students and those under-represented in our colleges and universities as Ben Davis University High School, where a student can earn a high school diploma and a two-year associate degree in four years,” said Dr. Butts.
Requirements for admission to Ben Davis University High School include having a GPA of at least 2.2 and being on track to be promoted to the next grade level. The school is designed to support students who are in the first generation of their families to attend college and who are part of under-represented populations in post-secondary educational institutions.
“The partnership between Vincennes University and Wayne Township is the first of its kind for both institutions. The academic success of the inaugural class is indeed indicative of a well-designed program. Vincennes University will follow the continued success of these students as they continue their studies at Vincennes University and other higher education institutions,” said Dr. Carolyn Jones, VU assistant provost for Curriculum and Instruction.
The majority of the school’s seniors will graduate with associate degrees in areas such as liberal arts, business management, information technology, and general studies/health careers. The school’s graduates have been awarded nearly $300,000 in scholarships from colleges in Indiana and elsewhere. In addition to the baccalaureate programs at Vincennes University, the graduates have been accepted by institutions that include Purdue University, Indiana University, University of Indianapolis, Butler University, and Loyola University Chicago.
“Students electing to attend Ben Davis University High School make many sacrifices. However, as 73 graduates walked across the stage on Saturday to pick up both a high school diploma and an associate degree, it was evident to all that the rewards definitely outweighed the sacrifices” Jones said.
Speakers at the first commencement ceremony included Wayne Township Schools Superintendent Terry Thompson and VU President Dick Helton.
VINCENNES UNIVERSITY - Indiana’s First College
VU is state-supported with campuses in Vincennes and Jasper and additional sites such as the Indianapolis International Airport. VU also offers instruction at military sites throughout the nation.
In addition to offering 200 associate degree and certificate programs, VU also offers bachelor’s degree programs in technology, homeland security, nursing, secondary education programs in mathematics and, science, and special education/elementary education.
VU enrolls students from throughout Indiana, 24 other states, and 26 foreign countries. Tuition and fees are the lowest among Indiana campuses with residence halls. VU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Founded in 1801, VU is Indiana’s first college and is the only college in the nation founded by an individual who would later become President of the United States. William Henry Harrison, the ninth U.S. President, founded VU while serving as governor of the Indiana Territory. More information is available at www.vinu.edu.
Source: Vincennes University