This May Michigan can celebrate, the first dual-enrolled student in the nation to achieve a 4-year degree with fully-funded tuition. Sarah Klammer was able to achieve this due to an innovative program called PACE (Paris Academy of Co-Secondary Education). Through PACE, students who live in Michigan can attend college full time for free, with no added burden on taxpayers. Sarah started at age 15 and had completed her Bachelor’s degree by age 19 with no student debt to follow her into the next phase of life.
PACE is the brainchild of Nancy Paris. Her vision was to create a way for students to access college at an earlier age without the typical barriers to enrollment that many “early college” programs include. PACE allows students to enroll at any age with the only requirement being that they successfully complete their courses. Classes may count for both high school and college credit, with the reasoning being that if a student is able to complete college-level work, they are certainly beyond the high school-level requirement as well. The savings in both money and time are enormous for students and their families.
Since PACE expanded its program this year to include anyone in the state of Michigan, it has seen a huge surge of interest statewide, especially with homeschoolers and advanced students capable of college-level work. PACE also provides online high school classes for free, as well as vocational training, certification and other educational opportunities. Some people question if students will be comfortable in college at such a young age, but Sarah feels that “for me, it opened a lot of doors. I was able to do so much more, meet more people and take classes that really challenged me. I didn’t have to stick to the 8am-3pm schedule, 5 days a week, so I had so much more time to do the things I was interested in. It’s been terrific”.
For more information on PACE, contact Nancy Paris at firstname.lastname@example.org or 989-245-1562. Qualifications for enrollment are: You must be under the age of 20, not yet have earned a high school diploma and live in the state of Michigan.