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EXCELerate Program promises to keep CRC students community college stay at two years

Heather Kemp, Staff Writer

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A unique program has launched this semester aimed at speeding up the time selected students spend at the community college level, taking advantage of the facilities offered by the Cosumnes River College Elk Grove Center.

The EXCELerate Program guarantees that participating students will be ready to transfer into the California State University or University of California systems with an A.A. degree in liberal arts or an A.S.-T for business administration in two years, including one summer semester.

“The students that are qualifying and being accepted to the EXCELerate Program are not being waitlisted, they are not out there signing up for classes they don’t need, because their track is listed for them, so that helps to ensure they are going to be done with their degree and transfer in two years,” said Jacqueline Chacon, a student personal assistant at the Elk Grove Center.

It’s a simple application that students do online, it just takes a few minutes.”

— Jacqueline Chacon

One feature that helps avoid the scramble for classes is that students’ schedules are selected for them and take place in the afternoons on the satellite campus.

“I’m an incoming freshman and that would be a lot of help for us because we’re coming in blindsided,” said Staci Miller, 18, an undeclared major.

Other benefits include access to a knowledgeable staff to counsel students during the two years and small class sizes of 30 peers who share the same major.

 

To qualify for EXCELerate, students must have tested into or taken prerequisites placing them in transfer level math and English classes.

“It’s a simple application that students do online, it just takes a few minutes,” Chacon said.

The application can be found by visiting the EXCELerate page on both the CRC and Elk Grove Center websites. If accepted to the program, students go to orientations and then start their classes.

“The ideal candidate for the EXCELerate program is someone who has under 15 units,” Chacon said. “The best candidate would be someone who is brand new, that way they can follow the cohort for the two years and the semester, but we will accept students that have completed some units.”

While the dates to sign up for the program this fall have passed, students will have the opportunity to apply for program before the fall 2015 semester.

Many students were unaware that the program or Elk Grove Center even existed.

“They should advertise it better because it’s a good program, two years and you’re able to go instead of how many years a lot of people spend here,” Miller said.

Among other students, Kaitlyn Sain, an 18-year-old undeclared major who said she is not interested in applying to the program, thinks it could be beneficial to other students.

“It could be helpful because it would be easier to get everything done faster,” she said.

Chacon said that another motive behind EXCELerate was to get more attention for the Elk Grove Center and all of the classes and facilities they have there, including financial aid and counseling.

Students that are considering one of the majors covered by the program that would like more information about signing up for the program in the future or about what other things the Center has to offer should call 916-525-4300.

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EXCELerate Program promises to keep CRC students community college stay at two years