Colleges enter partnerships with Serra Catholic
St. Vincent and Seton Hill offer scholarships
Seton Hill University and St. Vincent College have announced articulation agreements that will guarantee acceptance and scholarships to students from Serra Catholic High School in McKeesport.
Representatives of the two schools made the official announcement during a Back to School Night event Sept. 6 at Serra Catholic.
Seton Hill will offer a stackable scholarship of $3,500 to students who have earned 12 Seton Hill credits (through Serra Catholic's college in high school program) with a 3.0 grade-point average. Those who earn 24 Seton Hill credits with a 3.0 GPA will receive a stackable scholarship of $5,500.
St. Vincent will offer scholarships on a number of levels. They will range from a minimum scholarship of $18,000 to Serra Catholic students with a 3.0 average and an SAT score of 1,000, to $22,000 for a GPA of 3.75 and an SAT of 1,300.
The Latrobe college also will recognize and accept all credits offered at Serra Catholic.
Dr. Terrance DePasquale, dean of graduate and external programs at Seton Hill, pointed out that not only do the measures provide parents with sizeable financial savings, but it helps students to become more successful by teaching them time management skills and giving them confidence in tackling college-level work.
"It really can make a significant difference in a young person's life," he said.
St. Vincent has offered programs of this type to schools in the Greensburg Diocese, but it will be the first for a school in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.
Dr. John Smetanka, vice president of academic affairs at St. Vincent, noted his school's "robust" college in high school program at Serra Catholic.
"We're able to package that into a really nice offering so that students can get a nice jump-start to their college education," he said.
Serra Catholc now offers 62 college credits through partnerships with schools that include the University of Pittsburgh and Carlow University.
"It provides the opportunity to pay for four years of Catholic high school by the savings realized at the college level," said Tim Chirdon, Serra Catholic principal.
It is further testament, he noted, to the quality of education at Serra Catholic. It highlights the achievement of the students and the quality of instruction that the teachers provide.
Teachers in the college in high school program are all approved as adjunct faculty for the post-secondary institutions.
In mentioning that some seniors can have six or seven college-level courses a day, Chirdon added, "Serra is becoming not just a college preparatory program, but a college program."
More information on Serra Catholic is available at www.serrahs.org, or by calling 412-751-2020.