POTSDAM -- The Clarkson School, Clarkson University’s early college entrance program, is teaching its largest class in more than 15 years.
This year’s Clarkson School class has 69 high-school-age students who are progressing beyond their high school curricula.
TCS gives these students, this year coming from 10 U.S. states and Vietnam, a chance to continue challenging themselves as a part of a nationally ranked small research institution.
Since 1978, TCS has offered advanced students the option to forgo what is typically their high school senior year and begin university coursework at Clarkson. TCS students are fully matriculated first year undergraduates, taking a full course load alongside other Clarkson students.
Enrollment has risen as gifted high school students increasingly examine options like The Clarkson School as their own high schools face budget constraints, according to Director of Admissions Matthew Rutherford.
“The Clarkson School provides an opportunity for these students to continue challenging themselves academically, while in many instances completing their high school diploma requirements,” Rutherford said. “Whether the intent is to remain at Clarkson as a sophomore or to move onto another university, our primarily objective is to assist these students so they are in the best position to continue pursuing their academic goals.”
They have access to all of Clarkson’s resources and amenities with separate residential facilities and activities designed for them. A student may opt to remain at Clarkson after the TCS year to complete a degree, while others may go on to attend other universities.
Sufia Bakshi of Canton, at TCS this year, said she felt the program was right for her.
“I felt educationally prepared and mature enough to begin college. I was running out of courses to take at my high school and I wanted to avoid a lazy senior year,” Bakshi said. “TCS was the perfect alternative -- the program provides an academically and socially enriching environment.”