Exploring TMCC's Jumpstart Program

May 25, 2017

Parents hear about many options for their students these days. One of them is the dual credit program at Truckee Meadows Community College. That’s where students can get high school and college credit at the same time. A lot of students know about it and are curious. Reno Youth Radio’s Kenia Aguirre is one of those curious students, so she spoke to a student who went through it and how it has worked for her.

 

Maya graduated from TMCC's Jumpstart program earning dual credit in high school and college.

As a high school student, sometimes I’m bored and instruction seems to move along slowly. Maya was just like me. In high school, she was an exceptional student and not getting the challenge she wanted. The counselor said TMCC was right for her. The program, however, does cost money. But the counselor solved that, too.

“She actually managed to get a grant to cover my costs for both classes,” says Maya. 

She says it was way different. In high school, her parents would go with her to school. Not anymore—she had to learn to be more independent.

“But going to TMCC, I actually had to figure things out for myself, so I had to take more responsibility for my classes, for learning what I had to.”

The program gave her a lot of homework. She received help for assignments from her high school teachers and got better grades.

“There were writing assignments and I did use my high school English teacher to review those assignments for my college classes.”

TMCC also taught her how to manage her workload so she could have a life outside of school.

“For English, I’d read ahead two weeks in homework. I’d do my assignments about maybe two or three class periods before it was done and have it completed. ”

Maya struggled with transportation. TMCC was really far away for her.

“I had to continually remember to fill up my gas tank because I’d be making more trips than I usually would.”

While it was a challenge, that’s what she was looking for. The Jumpstart program gave her 6 college credits and allowed her to graduate from TMCC early. She got into UNR early and even got a job through the program. And that, to me, is an inspiration.