Free college tuition available to West Alabama high school students this summer

Free college tuition available to West Alabama high school students this summer

TUSCALOOSA, AL (WBRC) - Students in West Alabama have the opportunity to take tuition-free college courses this summer at Shelton State Community College.

The Tuscaloosa City Schools says rising juniors or seniors in their district can take up to six tuition-free credit hours this summer at Shelton. Students must have at least a 2.5 grade point average to qualify. The offer applies to courses in certain career-technical fields.

Additionally, Shelton State says there are opportunities for free tuition and fees for high school students throughout Tuscaloosa, Bibb, Hale, Sumter, Marengo and Greene Counties. This also applies to courses in certain career-technical programs, and is available on a first-come, first serve basis.

The deadline to apply is May 23. For Tuscaloosa City Schools students, Superintendent Mike Daria says this is a way to blend the high school and college experience, and have them ready for a career, further education, or both, as soon as they receive their TCS diploma.

"It is entirely possible that we'll be able to graduate our high school students with a high school diploma and up to and including an associate's degree, at the same time," Daria said of students who take college credit courses during the summer and throughout the school year.

Daria also says a goal of the system is to provide access to low or no-cost college credit while students are still in high school.

"This becomes a financial issue for families. And if we can remove that financial issue early while our students are in high school, we can help support that student and certainly that family, by removing financial cost as a barrier to success."

Learn more about the opportunities for TCS students here.

To learn more about dual-enrollment opportunities for high school students through Shelton State, E-mail

Shelton State Community College Director of Recruitment TJ Smith encourages students to work with their school counselors on application materials while school is still in session. He also says the summer credit is an excellent opportunity for someone who may not plan to seek a four-year degree to be career-ready immediately upon high school graduation.

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