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$1M grant to help Joplin students get jump on college education - KOAM TV 7

$1M grant will help Joplin students get jump on their college education

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Joplin school officials and businesses partner up to prompt students to think about career paths while in high school.  Now they have a $1 million Campus Innovation Grant to help make it happen.

The grant written by MSSU will also involve Crowder College and local businesses.

It's all about making it possible for students to finish college in three years, get into a career field, and help students save money.

"It will probably save them on average $6,000 a year by doing dual credit," says Tia Strait, the Dean of School of Health Sciences.

More students could take classes that are dual credit and even learn at MSSU's Health Science building.

The focus is high demand careers like nursing, respiratory therapy and dental hygiene when it comes to health, as well as courses like computer science and accounting in business - dual credit courses will line up with career paths at the new Franklin Technical School and Joplin High School.

MSSU coordinators say the program creates opportunities and tools to get to college and career goals.

"Those tools will be available to help them pay for that dual credit because there's a lot of students out there that have the ability and aptitude to take dual credit classes - they're taught at a college level but they may not have the resources," says Strait.

The grant funds will initially be used to pay for credit hours but could help pay for college level instructors to teach a class at the high school.

The program will also be open to unemployed workers seeking higher skilled jobs or those reentering the work force.

The application process is expected to start in February 2013, meaning this year's sophomores would be the first to get help earning that dual credit.

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