It’s official, 17 Otsego sophomores will start college courses in the fall as a part of Early College Allegan County (ECAC). ECAC is a special program where kids can earn an associates degree or 62 college credits by taking both college and high school classes for three years. It begins in the fall of their junior year, so they agree to an extra year of high school, but it all comes at no cost to the families; students earn those credits and/or degrees for free. The college courses are run through Lake Michigan College but are taught at the Allegan County Tech Center.
During their junior and senior years, they attend high school half the day to complete their high school class requirements, then attend their college classes the other half. They can choose from three different college tracks:
- Associate of Arts/General Transfer
- Associate of Applied Science/Business
- Certificate/Pre-Apprentice Machine Tool Technology
Their senior year includes a high school course, but all classes are completed at the tech center. They also walk with their current class at graduation to experience those “senior moments” with the kids they’ve had as classmates for years.
Otsego’s superintendent, Jeff Haase, helped facilitate bringing this early college program to Allegan County which began in 2015. Since its inception, Otsego has had the largest percentage of students join each cohort. “I’m extremely proud of Otsego Public Schools and these students as we continue to lead the way with enrollment and graduation in the ECAC program,” says Supt. Haase.
Those accepted to the latest cohort are: Brooklyn Badders, Adrian Baker, Eva Bearup, Hannah Crawford, Charles (Felix) Corona-Lambeth, Nick Grant, Chloe Gray, Jessica Kent, Amelia Loney, Isaac Madalinski, Elizabeth Miller, Aija Moulder, Isabella Puente, Nyla Reed, Emily Rice, Braeden Vorndran, and Aiden VanTilburg.
To learn more about ECAC, check out the ECAC Website.