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MCC Launches Science, Engineering Academy for High School Students

[Wednesday, March 13, 2019]

Area high school students interested in science, engineering, or health careers have a new opportunity to take college-level classes to earn college credit through a new program offered by McHenry County College (MCC).

Through MCC’s Science and Engineering Academy, students can get a head start on college and learn in small classes from experienced instructors who are dedicated to teaching—at a fraction of the cost.

“Students can earn valuable college credits now when they have fewer distractions than they will in their first year away at a four-year school,” said Maria Taydem, Ph.D., dean of Mathematics and Sciences. She said this program is intended for the strong students who have a sense of their career goals.

“While AP classes are college-level, AP programs don’t necessarily guarantee college credit,” Taydem said, adding that students could earn close to a full year of college credit—25-26 credit hours—in four semesters.

All of the courses are standard requirements for these paths of study and are designed to transfer to four-year schools participating in the Illinois Articulation Initiative. Because the course content is fairly standardized, they usually transfer to out-of-state schools as well.

MCC is offering fall and spring academy classes five days a week in the morning, which allows students to start their day at MCC and then return to their high school for their remaining classes.

A typical student in these academy classes would start to take classes as early as this summer and continue into fall, followed by spring 2020 and complete the academy in summer 2020. Those interested in engineering and hard sciences would take Math 175 in the summer and Math 245 and Physics 291 in the fall, for example. Those interested in health fields would take Math 175 this summer and Physics 280 and Chemistry 165 in the fall.

Students interested in MCC’s Science and Engineering Academy can sign up through their high school counselor. For more information, visit or contact Maria Taydem at or at (815) 455-8538.

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