TNCC Offers Summer Courses for Surry County High School Students as Part of Dual Enrollment

Published: August 4, 2009

For the second consecutive year, Thomas Nelson Community College (TNCC) and Surry County Public Schools have partnered to offer the Surry Academy for Global Education (SAGE). The program aims to give high school students the opportunity to earn an associate’s degree while still in high school.

Surry County offers two dual enrollment options: students can earn college credit for approved courses taught in their high school and/or they can take dual enrollment courses on campus at TNCC. This summer, 36 Surry students are taking Biology and Information Technology courses at the College’s Hampton campus. Some of the students also participated in last year’s program.

While the ultimate goal is an Associate of Arts degree, the program benefits participants by exposing them to the rigors of college level work, building skills toward employment in Surry County, and saving money on college costs. Dual enrollment credits are transferable to four-year institutions and shorten the time needed to graduate.

Surry has made a commitment to dual enrollment by giving intensive reading instruction in elementary and middle school so that students are prepared for college level work by high school. The school system also recruits teachers who meet TNCC’s requirements for adjunct faculty.

SAGE students enrolled in the 2009 summer session are taking classes from 10 a.m. to 3:50 p.m. Monday through Thursday. “It’s going to be an exceptional teenager who gives up their summer. It’s really intense, but they’re interested,” TNCC Dual Enrollment Coordinator Kris Rarig said.

The course offerings include:

  • BIO 101: General Biology I
  • AST 117: Keyboarding for Computer Usage
  • ITE 102: Computers and Information Systems
  • ITE 130: Introduction to Internet Services

The Surry County Public School System covers the cost of tuition and books. “It’s a priority now for school divisions to offer dual enrollment in the schools, so they are motivated to approach the community colleges that serve them,” Rarig said.

Besides Surry County, TNCC has a thriving dual enrollment program with Newport News Public Schools, Hampton City Schools, York County School Division, Poquoson City Public Schools, Williamsburg-James City County Schools, the Governor’s School for Science and Technology, New Horizon’s Career-Technical Program, Denbigh Baptist Christian School and Hampton Christian High School.

Local school divisions receive a discounted tuition rate for in-school dual enrollment courses. Last year, over 2,000 local high school students received college credit for courses taken in their high schools, she noted.

On-campus dual enrollment at TNCC is available to students from those high schools as well as students who are home-schooled or attend public schools outside of TNCC’s immediate service area.

For information about on-campus dual enrollment, please contact the Admissions Office at 825-2800. For more information about in-school dual enrollment opportunities, please email inquiries to


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