Traffic Advisory: Be advised that both the US 395 northbound exit to Parr/Dandini, and the northbound on-ramp from Parr/Dandini to US 395 are currently closed through mid-Sept. 2024. Please use detours to access Dandini Blvd. from the Parr Blvd. bridge or from Clear Acre Ln. See more information.

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Jump Start: Education That's Ahead of the Curve

Jump Start Program students stand on the stairway to the Student Center by the plaza, giving thumbs up alongside Wizard.
Jared Libby

Education has grown tremendously over the last couple of decades, showing us that there are opportunities for students to command their academic experiences like never before and follow a distinct path to achieving their ambitions. Having that level of control allows you to navigate many learning spaces, and an excellent strategy that many enthusiastic individuals are taking advantage of is earning dual credit within our Jump Start Program.

At TMCC, earning high school and college credits is an outstanding opportunity for the lives of aspiring students. Instructors find this level of personal growth exciting, confident that through their efforts, they will surpass their peers by gaining lasting knowledge and tangible credits, precious gifts for those looking to hit the ground running.

The Equitable Expansion of College Access and Success

Acquiring college and high school course credits gives you an undeniable edge in your academic career, letting you focus on which field of study fascinates and inspires you. As a reward, you can complete your degree faster, knocking out the prerequisites before setting foot on campus. As a member of Jump Start, you can hone your studying skills for the future. A diverse collection of classes encourages you to explore different subjects, each with successful professional outcomes after graduation. Whether your interests are known immediately or take a little longer to grasp, there is no better program to help reveal that to you without breaking the bank.

College can be expensive but not out of reach. We're advocates for an affordable and accessible academic journey here! Nothing should limit your educational dreams. Jump Start is a terrific investment, saving students plenty of money and time, which seem to come in short supply nowadays. Grant awards are available to those who are low-income or part of underrepresented groups, too.

With three types of dual credit courses available, there’s bound to be a scenario that works for you:

  • Jump Start Cohort Classes: Reserved enrollment for a specific group of students, typically taught at a high school site by TMCC faculty.
  • Jump Start Concurrent Classes: College-level courses typically taught at a high school or online by a qualified high school instructor.
  • Jump Start to TMCC (J2TMCC): Welcomes individual students to take college classes for accomplishment, dual credit, a head start to higher education, or all of the above.

With Concurrent Class rates at only $75 per class, the bounds of progress in higher education far outweigh the amount of fiscal expenses in the long run. If you or someone you know is in 9th–12th grade, motivate them to apply for admission today! Rising to the challenge will prove worthwhile in many aspects of their college journey.

Never Limit Your Growth

Damonte Ranch High School (DRHS) is witnessing a greater rate of advanced placement (AP) Political Science students finishing their courses, thanks to the longtime partnership between our two institutions. Jon Polson, Damonte Ranch Social Studies instructor, discussed the dramatic increase in the caliber of completions, working closely and individually with them to ensure his scholars follow through with the curriculum.

“I taught AP courses for 13 years before partnering with Jump Start. I am a huge proponent of the program, including the avenues and choices it provides for students. It wasn’t easy trying to leave AP, but now that I have the data and relationships I’ve created with TMCC, moving to dual credit was the best decision I’ve made in my 23 years of teaching,” said Polson.

The numbers speak for themselves, and the student success seen at DRHS in Spring 2023 is typical of similar situations throughout Washoe County School District (WCSD). Polson reported that three online courses, including Political Science 101, 208, and Economics 101, resulted in 147 students earning a whopping 280 credits. Most notably, nearly 100% of the students enrolled received college credit, a phenomenal improvement over the percentage of students who previously took an AP exam.

Dual credit students have seen incredible success, but that’s not a new trend: Polson has records dating back to the Fall Semester of 2019 when the class score was another stellar 100% (a 3-credit course with 66 students and 198 credits earned). The union between TMCC and high school instructors is one we must sustain, shaping prospective leaders and active members of tomorrow’s society trailblazing through their college careers with determination.

College is more convenient than ever, with options like Web Course (asynchronous, meaning learn on your schedule), Web Live (synchronous, being present at a virtual or physical place interacting in real-time), Hybrid, or In-Person that embrace diverse academic outlooks to incorporate insightful people from any locale while utilizing whichever situation is ideal for them!

“My son graduated high school with 12 dual credits. In many cases, I introduced an asynchronous model of instruction, and they discovered how to become better managers of their time and self-disciplined learners. Students are more college-ready than ever,” said Polson.

“Campuses today have a stronger online presence. They gain self-confidence by completing college-level work. Students can attend high school and have a flexible schedule for working or extracurricular activities. Not to mention, all TMCC courses are weighted and give a higher GPA,” continued Polson.

The future is shining on our younger students thanks to an alliance with the WCSD and adamant professors like Polson, whose goal is to provide a compelling academic experience and instruction with favorable outcomes in a modern higher educational atmosphere. As part of Jump Start, high schoolers are getting ahead of the curve through dual credit acquisition, heightened awareness of college-level courses, and narrowing down their areas of curiosity to prepare them for a fulfilling and prosperous career!

"We have cast a wide net of students by offering dual credit. They are not intimidated by taking a 101 course and gain certainty in knowing they can complete college work. Many told me they were not going because they were afraid it was not for them, but after taking a few TMCC courses, the level of commitment and tenacity to do it is there," said Polson.

"We will strengthen our program at our school, WCSD, and TMCC. As this is a huge push for the state and our district, we are carving the path to preserve this project, establishing more successful college students in the long run," said Polson.

For more information, please visit the Jump Start Program website or call 775-674-7683.