The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Dual Enrollment Program offers local high school students a head start

Students enter and exit the Student Services Building at El Camino College on Nov. 27. The Outreach and School Relations team headquartered in the Warrior Welcome Center, which itself is located in the building, offers services to help high school students who participate in the Dual Enrollment Program. (Caleb Smith | The Union)

High school students in the local area who are interested in furthering their education can access a variety of on-campus resources and programs at El Camino College.

To study at El Camino high school students need to join the Dual Enrollment Program, which allows them to take classes as part-time college students while still attending high school.

Dual Enrollment Coordinator Michelle Arthur said the program’s goal is for students to get a head start in their educational careers.

“[The goal] is to save money, save time, explore [and] get ahead,” Arthur said.

Dean of Enrollment Services Robin Dreizler said approximately 2,000 students are dual enrolled at El Camino, with North Torrance High School sending the largest number of students to the college.

“While the entire enrollment is going up, the enrollment in the high schools is going down because [there are] fewer high school students than there were 10 years ago and the trend will continue down for a while,” Dreizler said.

Although the program aims to help high school students succeed, Student Services Specialist Brian Hayden said he has concerns some students and their parents would view the program as a shortcut for getting into college.

“There is no real shortcut for it,” Hayden said. “We want them to learn the steps for enrolling at El Camino so they can take that into the future.”

Hayden said he highly recommends high school students read through the El Camino website as it provides basic information they might be looking for.

“We update the website every day,” Hayden said.

The Outreach and School Relations team from the Warrior Welcome Center offers services such as application workshops, financial aid workshops, campus tours, basic needs, academic support and more.

Students can submit a request and reach out to the center located in the Student Services Building.

High school students do not pay enrollment fees and are not full-time students, as such they are not able to have access to Student Health Services.

However, they can get support through TimelyCare, where students have access to 24/7 mental virtual health care from anywhere in the United States.

In addition to health services, financial aid is also not available for high school students.

The Outreach and School Relations team hosts workshops to inform participants financial aid will be available for them if they come back to El Camino as a full-time student after graduating from high school.

“Students who are coming from disadvantaged backgrounds, [such as] low income, are definitely going to need that extra support through those grants,” Financial Aid Assistant Director David Brown said.

Brown said students can take the required steps through those orientations as they cover a lot of basic but important information to help set students on the right path, financial or otherwise.

“It is a good opportunity for us to reach out to every student that’s coming,” Brown said.

Even though there are classes available at El Camino for high school students to enroll in, Arthur wants students to know not all of them will count when transferring to a university.

“Students and their parents need to know that while a majority of their classes will count and transfer, it’s not a 100% guarantee,” Arthur said.

In order to transfer to a university, students have to be careful not to fully rely on the program.

“They need to meet a counselor and contact the intended university that they are trying to transfer to either right out of high school or as a transfer student,” Arthur said.

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