High honor for Farmingdale State high school effort

Never too young: A Farmingdale State College program offering college credits to high-achieving high schoolers has earned national accreditation.

An innovative Farmingdale State College program built for eager high school students who can’t wait to crack the collegiate books has earned prestigious national accreditation.

Farmingdale State’s University in the High School program, which offers high-achieving high schoolers courses from 19 departments across Farmingdale State’s four schools, has been officially endorsed by the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships.

The circa-1998 program is rather literally named: University in the High School students take college classes right in their high schools at reduced tuition rates ($50 per credit), then transfer the credits to FSC or another higher-ed institution – essentially, a running start in pursuit of an academic degree.

According to this week’s announcement, Farmingdale State becomes the first four-year SUNY school to earn a nod from the NACEP’s Accreditation Commission, which approved only 19 “concurrent enrollment partnerships” across the nation this year. Including those new additions, the Accreditation Commission has endorsed a grand total of 116 national programs.

Diana Johnson: Very selective.

That’s rarified air. But University in the High School, which gives motivated high schoolers access to Farmingdale State’s Greenley Library and other campus resources, makes the cut, according to Diana Johnson, vice chairwoman of the NACEP Accreditation Commission.

And that’s not easy, noted Johnson, referencing an “extensive peer-review process” leading to the official certification.

“Farmingdale State College has demonstrated to its peers that the college courses it offers in high schools are of the same high quality as college courses offered on campus,” Johnson said Monday. “I’m pleased to recognize [University in the High School] as one of a select group of … concurrent enrollment partnerships nationwide.”

Francine Federman, Farmingdale State’s assistant dean for College High School Programs, was equally pleased to receive the recognition, noting University in the High School’s considerable growth over the last two decades.

“We began in 1998 with one high school,” Federman said in a statement. “And (we) have grown to include partnerships with more than 125 high schools.”