Bard College Catalogue 2017-18
Bard Early Colleges
Founded on the belief that many intellectually curious high school students, regardless of background, are ready and eager for the challenges of a college education, the Bard Early Colleges (BEC) have pioneered a proven, scalable early college educational model that extends the academic resources of a liberal arts college to public high school students. At BEC campuses, young scholars undertake a credit-bearing college course of study in the liberal arts and sciences following the 10th grade, culminating in up to 60 transferable credits and, in certain schools, an associate in arts degree from Bard College. The BEC curriculum is designed to reflect Bard’s high academic standards as well as its grounding in the liberal arts and sciences. By giving a diverse group of students the opportunity to take a challenging college course of study while in high school, the Bard Early Colleges help close the higher education achievement gap by helping students from a wide range of backgrounds access, afford, and complete college.
Combining the academic rigor and culture of college with critical academic support services, the Bard Early Colleges have achieved remarkable results in terms of college preparation and four-year degree attainment rates. Bard College emerged as a leader in the early college movement in 1979, when it assumed governance of Simon’s Rock: The Early College—the nation’s first private, residential early college for younger scholars. Since then, the BEC network has grown, as several urban school systems have partnered with Bard to offer this education alternative to promising students. The BEC network includes six campuses offering a full-time, degree-granting associate in arts (A.A.) program, and three part-time programs in which students can earn up to one year of college credit. With the exception of Simon’s Rock, all campuses provide tuition-free college education, giving students a tremendous financial head start on higher education. Brief descriptions of Bard’s early college programs follow, in the order of their founding.
Bard College at Simon’s Rock: The Early Collegesimons-rock.edu
Bard College at Simon’s Rock is the only residential college in the country specifically designed to provide students with the opportunity to begin college immediately after the 10th or 11th grade. Simon’s Rock enrolls approximately 400 full-time students, and awards both A.A. and B.A. degrees. The campus is located in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. Bard Academy at Simon’s Rock, which launched in 2015, uses the first two years of high school to help students develop the skills they will need to succeed in college. Upon completing the 10th grade, Academy students begin full-time college study at Bard College at Simon’s Rock.
Bard High School Early Collegesbard.edu/earlycollege/programs
Bard High School Early College (BHSEC) Manhattan, founded in 2001 and serving approximately 550 students, was one of the first public early college high schools in the nation and one of only a few to offer a two-year, college degree–granting liberal arts program embedded within a four-year, tuition-free public high school. A second BHSEC campus opened in Long Island City, Queens, in 2008 (serving approximately 600 students), and a third opened in Newark, New Jersey, in 2011 (serving more than 300 students). In 2014, a fourth campus opened in Cleveland, Ohio, which will serve approximately 450 students from across the Cleveland Metropolitan School District when fully enrolled. BHSEC Baltimore opened its doors in August 2015 as a partnership between Bard and Baltimore City Public Schools; at full enrollment, the school will serve 500 students. Thanks to the success of the first Cleveland campus, a second Bard High School Early College has been approved for the city’s East Side and is scheduled to open in fall 2017.
The BHSEC model has proven extraordinarily effective in positioning young people of all backgrounds to succeed in higher education. In the BHSEC Class of 2016, 88 percent of students earned an A.A. degree alongside a high school diploma, and 95 percent earned a high school diploma and some college credit; approximately 95 percent of graduates are continuing their education at a four-year college or university. To date, well over 90 percent of BHSEC graduates (97 percent in the Classes of 2005–09) have completed their baccalaureate degrees, a significantly higher percentage than the national average of 60 percent. A independent, quasi-experimental study on the flagship campuses in New York City found that BHSEC students completed bachelor’s degrees at a 31 percent higher rate than comparison students who attended traditional public high schools. In Newark, where only 13 percent of the population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, 74 percent of BHSEC Newark Class of 2016 earned a Bard associate in arts degree alongside their high school diplomas.
Bard Early College in New Orleansbard.edu/ecno
In 2008, Bard opened Bard Early College in New Orleans (BECNO) in post–Hurricane Katrina New Orleans. Nearly 100 BECNO students from public high schools across New Orleans spend the second half of every school day as undergraduates of Bard College, completing the first year of a Bard education during the last two years of high school.
Bard Early College at the Harlem Children’s Zone Promise AcademyThe Bard Early College at the Harlem Children Zone (HCZ) Promise Academy, established in 2013, is an early college partnership serving more than 130 students that operates at the two HCZ Promise Academy high schools. Participating 9th- and 10th-grade students can enroll in precollege preparatory courses, and 11th- and 12th-grade students who successfully complete the preparatory courses can choose from college courses in a range of liberal arts and sciences subjects and earn up to one year of transferable credit.
Bard in Hudson Civic AcademyIn this Hudson, New York, program, which launched in 2016, students spend the first part of the school day at their home high schools, then take one course per day at a dedicated Bard site. Students attend a seminar modeled on the course that first-year students take on the Annandale campus and additional courses in fields such as social sciences and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Courses grant both Bard and high school credits. All students in the pilot year, funded primarily by the Galvan Foundation, were high school seniors; the program will include both seniors and juniors in 2017–18.