Cutting College Costs

By: Whitney Ray Email
By: Whitney Ray Email

Tallahassee, FL -- May 11, 2012 --

When Daniel Aldridge graduates high school next month, he'll already have earned 45 college credit hours.

Aldridge says, "Right before I came in to high school I was like, I'm going to try to take as many AP classes as I can."

Junior Catherine Kent is on track to earn 60.

"All these hours and these classes will really make me stand out in the admissions process and hopefully they will make stand out enough to earn a full scholarship."

In college, time is money. The longer you're enrolled, the more you pay. These students will save both time and money, by entering college as sophomores or maybe even higher.

"I could technically go in as a junior."

"The more time I can cut out the less money I'd have to pay and the less money I have to pay, the more money I actually have."

"College is expensive and I have four brothers."

These students owe part of their success to the growing number of Advanced Placement and Duel Enrollment courses in Florida schools.

Leon High School Prinicpal Rocky Hannah says, "We are giving 1,200 AP tests this week and next week. Last year we were at 1,100. The year before that 900.

"And earning college credit here is free. A high school student who earn 30 credit hours can eliminate one full year of college and save 5-thousand dollars on tuition alone."

Thousands more can be saved on room and board. This week the Florida Government Efficiency Task Force began reviewing an expansion of three year degree programs. At a time when the cost of college is rising, the task force believes it can cut the price tag by 25 percent.

Many students who enter college with credit still take four years to graduate and instead use their extra hour credits to earn second and third. The task force is looking to attract more students who just looking to save money and get out quickly.

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