Submitted by Morgan Butler (editor-in-chief)
Written by Berkeley Winston (staff writer)
The Advanced College Academy, ACA, is a program where students starting their junior year can take college credit classes through J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College. Once students finish taking the required classes for this program, they will obtain an associates degree in social sciences.
ACA is a fairly new program to Goochland County; the Senior Class of 2018 was the first class to take part in this program. However, the Junior Class is just starting and we are getting some reactions.
When asked about what aspects of ACA they like so far, Justin Peck and Patrick Kane talked about their newfound freedom. Angela Thurston stated that she is excited to be able to get an associate’s degree along with her high school diploma at graduation. As for the aspects of ACA that were challenging, Patrick Kane responded by saying that “juggling between ACA and high school work was difficult.” Angela Thurston stated that “it was difficult to manage the work from this program along with her Blue Ridge work”. In other words, time management was a consistent challenge.
Even though these juniors are just starting their ACA expedition, they have already learned new skills and tactics to help them on their future road to college. The two main skills obtained by these new ACA students were time management and learning how to study effectively for tests and quizzes.
With being a part of this program, the students are able to get a feel for what college will be like. Patrick stated, “I think this is going to help you when going off to college because you knock out a lot of the first year and second year courses colleges want you to take.”
Additionally, Angela stated “I think that this program will allow me to have an easier adjustment to college with the way the professors teach their classes.”
Ultimately, going into the ACA program is a huge transition for these juniors. Peck stated that “There is a higher level of maturity expectation. Teachers expect you to be respectful and just pay attention, do the work on time, and try your best.”
ACA is helping them to acquire these skills before graduation. In the long run, these juniors are in the process of learning how their upcoming educational careers in college will function.