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BCCC and UB apply "B-Power" partnership to bolster dual enrollment for city students

11/10/2017, 6 a.m.
Continuing the renewed synergy of partnerships to boost student options and achievement before considering higher education, Baltimore City Community College ...
Dr. Gordon F. May BCCC President/CEO Courtesy Photo

Continuing the renewed synergy of partnerships to boost student options and achievement before considering higher education, Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) and the University of Baltimore (UB) have launched the B-Power Initiative with help from funding from the University System of Maryland.

The new effort will help students determine which campus and program fits them best after graduation; provide students information on Dual Enrollment at BCCC and UB; effectively recruit students; and gain a better understanding of students' career and program interests by surveying them when they come to campus.

Fresh off the success of the YouthWorks summer jobs program in Baltimore City, sponsored by Mayor Catherine E. Pugh, the schools will gauge whether to offer the program consecutively - i.e., first at UB and then at BCCC - during the summer of 2018; guide UB Dual Enrollment students who haven't yet graduated but have taken both UB Dual Enrollment courses to BCCC for additional course opportunities; coordinate the capacity of UB and BCCC for Dual Enrollment; and share contact information for students who completed B-Power programs but who do not plan to attend UB, after they graduate.

"This is a wonderful collaboration between our colleges that meets the needs of students to ensure they're placed on a successful pathway," said Michael D. Thomas, BCCC Vice President for Workforce Development and Continuing Education who was formerly head of Career Technology Education for the City Schools. "Besides the opportunity to experience both a community college and a university campus geographically close to one another in the city where they live, students will have time to see how college works, how to pick their classes and choose a major— really, all the things you need to be successful in college."

Currently, UB serves a total of 14 middle and high schools in the dual enrollment program, all of whom had scheduled class times at UB during the fall 2017 semester. Currently, Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, a P-TECH (Pathways in Technology Early College High) school, which partners with BCCC for early college enrollment, participates in the UB program. The other P-TECH school, Carver Vocational-Technical High School, is slated to begin next spring.

"We are helping students to "bake success right into the cake" of their overall high school and college experience," said John Brenner, UB Director of Early College Initiatives.

Last fall, BCCC President/CEO Dr. Gordon F. May and UB President Kurt L. Schmoke signed an articulation agreement enabling seamless transfer of students who complete their studies at BCCC. UB's Bee Line transfer program will assist and provide benefits to those who wish to transfer to UB. The program will allow students to transfer as many as 63 credits, receive transfer scholarships if eligible and participate in UB's Helen P. Denit Honors Program. The program also guarantees admission and waives the UB application fee.