The new North Lake Collegiate Academy is opening in August as a joint effort of Dallas County Community College District and Dallas ISD. The new program—open to students anywhere in Dallas County— will put a tuition-free high school diploma and college degree within reach of more area students at a substantial financial savings to their families.
The new academy will offer courses and career pathways in public service, criminal justice and business administration. Rising ninth-graders have until Jan. 31 to apply at www.dallasisd.org/yourchoices. Parents and students can obtain details at an information sessions planned for 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24, at North Lake College, 1081 W. Shady Grove Rd. in Irving.
North Lake College President Christa Slejko welcomes the new program. “This is a wonderful opportunity for more high school students to earn a high school diploma and an associate degree at the same time,” she said. “The collegiate academy is a great option for students within our community, and we look forward to welcoming these new Blazers to our North Lake family this fall.”
Dallas ISD Principal Chase McLaurin, who will serve as administrator of the new program, says attending high school on a college campus is a major attraction for students who will in one sense be able to jump directly from middle school to college.
“I think the location is important for students,” he said. “Being on a college campus helps students realize that their dreams of going to college are real, possible, and coming true. This is a game changer for students and opens up a whole new world of opportunities.”
The tuition-free opportunity offers families the potential to save up to $40,000 in college tuition. Students also earn credit, hands-on experience and mentoring from industry partners in a variety of career pathways.
Since their inception in 2016, Dallas ISD’s collegiate academies have become a niche for highly motivated students whose families recognize the value of their student graduating with both a high school diploma and up to 60 hours of college credit or an associate degree at no personal cost to their families. The schools are a partnership of Dallas ISD and the Dallas County Community College District, which share faculty and curriculum and allow juniors and seniors to take classes on a college campus.