Hello lovelies! I’ve mentioned a few times on my blog before that I take college classes while I’m still in high school. Ohio has a program called the College Credit Plus program where students can take classes through a lot of different colleges in the state. I’m not sure what other states have a program similar, but in Ohio students can take college courses through it without having to pay for tuition or books. Today, I’m sharing my experience as a CC+ student, and a few tips if you’re thinking about taking college courses in high school too!
I started taking college classes through the program my junior year of high school at Wright State University Lake Campus. My school does offer a few college courses at the high school through CC+, but they are through a state college and not a university. This isn’t always a huge deal, but I felt more comfortable getting college credits through a university where I knew the credits would transfer better. Also, when I decided that I was going to do CC+, I was considering Wright State University Main Campus as a potential college after high school.
When I first started CC+, I had completely no clue what classes to take. I didn’t know whether I should do online or on-campus, so I just stuck with on-campus my first semester to get a feel for it. The school gave me a list of courses other students had taken, and my advisor at college gave me some basic classes freshmen typically take. Honestly, my first semester I winged it. I signed up for three random classes (a psychology, English, and history) and went with it.
My first bit of advice is to just go for it, even if you don’t know what degree you want in the future.
After my first semester, I pretty much knew I wanted to go to Kent State for Fashion Merchandising. I got in contact with an advisor from Kent and she sent me some information about the courses required for a fashion merchandising degree. For Kent State, the program requirements can be found on their website too. She sent me an online transfer guide for Kent, too. The transfer guide became my lifesaver before every academic appointment. I would check out the general education courses required for fashion merchandising, and use the transfer guide to find the Wright State equivalent.
I recommend getting in touch with prospective colleges to get a transfer guide and program requirements. It saves you from wasting your time taking classes that won’t contribute much to your degree.
Although, I did take a few classes that I’m not quite sure will transfer or that weren’t a program requirement. I took a Small Business Management class because at the time I wanted to own a boutique in the future.
My third semester of CC+, I did all online. It was a mistake for me, but it may not be for anyone else. Every day I had the mornings off and went to high school for 3 periods a day. I slept in most mornings and saved all of my homework for the day it was due. It was a huge mistake on my part, but taking all online may work for other people!
The college courses I’ve taken weren’t too difficult in my opinion. I wasn’t a straight A student in high school, but it wasn’t anything unachievable. I think some times people assume you have to be super smart to do CC+, but that’s just not the truth. At the college I go to, there is free tutoring, and I take full advantage of it. Earlier this semester, I was struggling in the microeconomics class I’m taking. I figured out the only way I am going to comprehend the material is to sit down and read the book until I understand it.
If you start to struggle in a college course, ask for help. Professors may be able to offer you extra credit or you can find a tutor to help you out. At my school, if you fail a college class, you have to pay for it!
Now, if you don’t know where your future is headed, you can still do CC+. Casey did CC+ with me my junior year and he did not really know what he wanted to do when he was older. He assumed college, but soon decided after that the military was where he was meant to be. Casey was able to take the classes through CC+ that counted for high school too, and he graduated a year early. Even with him being in the military it benefited him because he was able to rank up prior to enlistment.
Even if you aren’t 100% sure college is in your future, college credits can benefit you.
There’s a big misconception around CC+ that you might miss out on important events in high school. This is so wrong on SO many levels because if you want to be involved at school, you can be involved. I went to homecoming, prom, I played sports, and I’m even in a club. The things I missed out on were things I didn’t want to do, so if anyone tries to tell you that you’ll miss out on high school experiences, don’t believe them. I’m only a part-time college student, but I know people who do CC+ full time and feel the same way.
Another misconception about the program is that it’s hard to participate in sports. Again, SO wrong! I played golf and swim and I knew I had practices in the evening, so I made sure to take classes in the morning. There was one time when I had a sectionals golf match and a college exam on the same day and at the same time. I talked to my professor and he let me take the exam a day early. All the professors I had handed out a daily schedule in the syllabus, so I knew at the beginning of the semester when exams and important events were.
Don’t let anyone discourage you from the CC+ program. There’s a lot of misconceptions surrounding the program. If you have a question, don’t be afraid to ask someone who has already done it, like me!
Taking courses at a college campus during high school was genuinely the best decision I’ve ever made. I matured and became a lot more independent because of it. I should graduate high school with 38 college credits, and I didn’t have to pay for any of it except a parking fee! It takes some hard work and self-motivation, but it’s all worth it!
Please, if you have any questions about the CC+ program, let me know. I know when I started to consider it, I had a ton of questions that were left unanswered until I dove in and found out for myself. Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest to see more of The Chic Flamingo!