The Hudson City School District is pleased to announce a partnership with Bard College to offer a new dual enrollment program, Bard in Hudson Civic Academy.

At Bard in Hudson Civic Academy, high school students will be able to earn Bard College credits, which are transferable upon acceptance to Bard, most CUNY and SUNY programs, and many other colleges and universities across the United States. A pilot program will begin this fall, with an inaugural class of seniors from Hudson CSD and Germantown CSD. The future of the program may also include high school juniors.

The pilot year is being offered at no cost to the participating districts, students or families thanks in large part to a major grant from the Galvan Foundation. Additionally, a new campus site (located at 11 Warren Street in Hudson) is currently being converted by the Galvan Foundation to house the program. This location will also house the Bridge Program of the Berkshire Union Free School District. Though the programs will operate separately, Bard will be providing academic support services to both programs in the same building.

While highlighting social justice issues and civic engagement, the program is especially beneficial for students in good academic standing who have interests in the humanities and liberal arts, and who plan to attend a four­-year college. Courses are designed to provide a well-­rounded liberal arts experience and engage students in deep thinking about their world. While academic motivation and an interest in reading and writing are also predictive of success in the early college program, there is no set GPA requirement. Counselors, teachers and school administrators use these guidelines to encourage a broad range of students to apply. Representatives from Bard make final selections through an interview process.

To assist students in the transition to college­ level work, Bard in Hudson participants will also have access to college planning and counseling services, as well as writing support to help them prepare for the expectations of college courses.

After the pilot year, plans are under way to offer the Bard in Hudson program to all districts within the Questar III BOCES service area in fall 2017, and for districts to receive state aid to help cover tuition costs. The program will remain free of charge to students and their families. As a result, students will be able to earn 12 college credits per year of attendance at no cost.

Bard’s early college programs, currently running in public schools in Baltimore, Cleveland, Newark, New Orleans and New York City, have an impressive track record preparing students for further success in college. A recent comparison of students attending these programs showed that 97 percent completed bachelor’s degrees within six years, compared to the national average of 59 percent.

For further information about the program, contact program director Michael Sadowski at msadowsk@bard.edu.