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Welcome to RCC's Pathfinder Program

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RCC's Pathfinder program helps students find their academic and professional paths by providing opportunities to earn college credit and even complete a college certificate while still in high school. Pathfinder classes are taught by high school or RCC instructors and allow students to earn both RCC and high school credit.

In Oregon, the Governor's 40/40/20 initiative has set the goal that by 2025 all Oregon students will graduate from high school, 80% will earn a post-secondary degree or certificate and 40% will hold a bachelor's degree or higher. For more information on the 40/40/20 initiative see Oregon Learns.

Get a head start on college
  1. Save time and money by working toward a college certificate while in high school
  2. Bridge the gap between high school and college through dual enrollment.
  3. Assume the rights and responsibilities of an RCC college student when you enroll in Pathfinder classes. Pathfinder students are treated — and are expected — to behave like college students.

Set and complete goals

The goal of Pathfinder students is completion of a college certificate. Certificates are offered in a variety of Career Technical Education (CTE) programs, which include — but are not limited to — Electronics, Manufacturing, Basic Health Care, Business Technology and Computer Science.

In addition to CTE programs, Pathfinder students also may pursue the Oregon Transfer Module (OTM), the first step toward an Associate of Arts Transfer Degree (AAOT). See Career Pathways for more information.

Access funding

Pathfinder courses taught by high school teachers, also known as College Now courses, are offered at no cost to the student. See College Now for details.

For Pathfinder classes: taught at RCC, funding arrangements vary by high school. For example, at Buttle Falls High School, Eagle Point High School, Rogue River High School and participating Crater High Schools. RCC Foundation scholarships for tuition, fees, and books are available for students pursuing CTE programs, made possible through the Morris Family Foundation. Logos Charter School and other charter schools also offer financial help for their students taking RCC classes.

What is Pathfinder?

Pathfinder is an opportunity to earn college credits while you’re still in high school. There are two kinds of Pathfinder classes: College Now courses and traditional Rogue Community College classes. By taking both types of classes, you can earn a college certificate, or a college degree, while you are earning your high school diploma. More information can be found here.

College Now classes are taught by high school teachers and are offered during regular school hours at you high school. There is no cost associated with these classes. Check the High School List for College Now courses available at your high school. You can also take traditional Rogue Community College classes. These courses are taught by RCC instructors and are held at an RCC campus, at your high school, or online. The normal tuition and fees apply to these traditional classes.

Who can participate?

You must be at least 16 years old or be a high school junior to enroll in Pathfinder classes. There are students at every high school in Jackson and Josephine counties participating. Last year four Pathfinder students graduated from high school and two days later graduated from RCC.

What are the benefits of participation?
There are several benefits to participating in Pathfinder.

  • Save money
  • Get a head start
  • Looks good on college applications
  • Gain useful college preparation skills

As always, RCC strives to improve opportunities for Jackson and Josephine County high school students. If you have any questions, please contact the Educational Partnerships office at (541)-245-7806, or by email at HSA@RogueCC.edu

What is Pathfinder?

Pathfinder is a dual enrollment opportunity for your student to take college-level courses and earn college credits and certification, while still in high school. Pathfinder is comprised of two types of classes: College Now classes and traditional RCC classes. Pathfinder organizes these two types of classes in a sequence that results in a college certificate and, eventually, a college degree.

College Now classes are taught on site by high school instructors during regular high school hours, and they mirror classes taught on the RCC campus. There is no cost associated with the College Now classes. Check the High School list for classes available at you student's high school. Your student can also enroll in traditional RCC classes. These classes are taught by RCC faculty and are normal college classes in every way. These classes may be taught at an RCC campus, at your local high school, or online. Normal tuition and fees apply to these traditional classes.

Who participates?

Pathfinder is a dual-enrollment program based upon agreements between Rogue Community College and Jackson and Josephine County high schools. The Educational Partnerships team at RCC facilitates the relationships between the high schools and RCC. All of the high schools in Jackson and Josephine counties participate in Pathfinder. Each high school offers select RCC courses on its campus.

College Now at RCC offers over 80 classes to 15 high schools in 10 school districts and has agreements with well over 100 instructors.

What are the benefits of participation?

There are several benefits to participating in Pathfinder:

  • Save money
  • Get a head start
  • Looks good on college applications
  • Gain useful college preparation skills

As always RCC strives to improve opportunities for Jackson and Josephine County high school students. If you have any questions, please contact the Educational Partnerships office at (541)-245-7806, or by email at HSA@RogueCC.edu.

Welcome to College Now

College Now is an opportunity for high school students to take college-level courses and earn college credits, while still in high school. College Now is a dual-credit program based upon agreements between Jackson and Josephine County secondary schools and Rogue Community College. The RCC Educational Partnerships team facilitates the relationship between the high schools and the college. All of the high schools in Jackson and Josephine counties participate in the College Now program. Each high school offers select RCC courses on its campus. College Now classes are taught by high school instructors during regular school hours and mirror classes taught on the college campus.

The program manual clarifies program details for potential and current College Now secondary and post-secondary instructors. The manual addresses Oregon State program standards as adopted on May 7, 2009, by the Joint Board of Education. These standards address the areas of curriculum, faculty, students, and assessment. The manual is primarily for you, the instructor. Students have access to their own Student Handbook, describing student expectations, course requirements and procedures.

College Now at RCC offers over 80 classes to 15 high schools in 10 school districts and has agreements with well over 100 instructors. As always, RCC strives to improve opportunities for Jackson and Josephine County high school students.

Thank you again for your continued efforts and participation.

Educational Partnerships
Rogue Community College
7800 Pacific Ave
White City, Oregon 97503

Flip through our student success album to learn how the Pathfinder program helped four recent local-area high school students begin their college and Career Pathways journeys.

See our High School list to find out which College Now courses are available at your school.

 

Why is dual enrollment important?

More Americans are graduating high school and obtaining college degrees than ever before in history. The 2008 US Census report shows that 85% of people 25 years of age and older now have a high school diploma. Additionally, 27.7% of them have a bachelor’s degree or other advanced degree.

The level of education and type of occupation you enter helps determine the amount of money you will earn over the course of your lifetime.

Median annual earnings by level of educational attainment:

High school graduate $34,197
Associate’s degree $44,086
Bachelor’s degree $57,026
Master’s degree $69,958
Professional/PhD degrees $88,867 or greater

Source: U.S. Census bureau, American Community Survey, 2006-2008

Preparing for success

In addition to saving time and money on college tuition, dual enrollment increases the chances that you will successfully complete either an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. College Now courses are specifically designed to prepare you for success in all areas including necessary college-level mathematics.

Achieving academic momentum during the transition to college is one of the single most important things you can do to get off to a good start. Students who are able to satisfactorily finish 20 college credits by the end of the first year are in the best position to earn a degree.

“It is all the more reason to begin the transition process in high school with expanded dual enrollment programs offering true postsecondary course work so that students enter higher education with a minimum of 6 additive credits to help them cross that 20-credit line. Six is good, 9 is better, and 12 is a guarantee of momentum.”

Source: The Toolbox Revisited: Paths to Degree Completion From High School Through College. U.S. Department of Education, 2006.

Why math and science matters

According to the National Governors Association, growth in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) jobs is expected to average around 17% from 2008 to 2018, which amounts to over 7% more growth than in non-STEM jobs. Workers in these types of jobs earned an average of 44% more in 2009 than workers in non-STEM jobs.

Source: Building a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Education Agenda, National Governors Association, 2011.

To get a better idea of how STEM and Career Technical.Education (CTE) impacts how much money you can earn in the future, you can directly compare average hourly wages between STEM and non-STEM jobs.

Table 1. Average Hourly Earnings of Full-Time Private Wage and Salary Workers in STEM Occupations by Educational Attainment, 2010

Level of Educational Attainment Average hourly earnings Difference
  STEM Non-STEM Dollars Percent
High school diploma or less $24.82 $15.55 $9.27 59.6%
Some college or associate degree $26.63 $19.02 $7.61 40.0%
Bachelor’s degree only $35.81 $28.27 $7.54 26.7%
Graduate degree $40.69 $36.22 $4.47 12.3%

 

Source: STEM: Good Jobs Now and for the Future, US Department of Commerce, Economics and Statistics Administration, 2011

How do Career Pathways Certificates pay off?

In the Southern Oregon region, 145 students who were unemployed or underemployed completed a Career Pathway Certificate in 20081-2010.  Almost one third (32.4%) of those students became employed in either Health Services or Human Resources.  The average wage for students completing a certificate was $17.08 /hr which is $5.02 /hr above entry level wages and $2.00 /hr above the average wages for our area.

Source:  Extracted from OCCURS and OED data, 2012