Pilot program: Iberville Schools' College Academy at BRCC offers students innovative program

Staff Writer
Plaquemine Post South
Enrolled in the Iberville College Academy at BRCC are students from the East Iberville community Claudia Apsey, A. J. Burba, LouAnna Brigalia, Rebecca Bihm, Marie Comeaux, Stefani Corbin, Sean Griffin, Taylor Graf, Taylor Green, Madeline LeBlanc, Myiesha Bell, Donovan Griffin, Mary Roth, Logan Shutt, Katelyn Speadale, Tyra Toliver and Kristiana Williams. Shown with the students are (center) BRCC Chancellor Dr. Andrea Lewis Miller, Iberville School Superintendent Dr. P. Edward Cancienne, Jr., and (far right) BRCC Director of Dual Enrollment Janyth Matkin and (far left) Amanda Mayeaux, Iberville Parish Schools Career Management Specialist.

BATON ROUGE - Seventeen students from Iberville Parish schools are now participating in a pilot program called the Iberville College Academy at BRCC, which allows high school students to attend college classes on the campus. The program is open to all students in Iberville Parish.

MSA-East and Plaquemine High School both have students attending.

While on the campus, the students are able to take college courses, use the library, receive assistance at the Academic Learning Center, and participate in campus activities. The Iberville College Academy is housed in the Governor’s Building and managed by Iberville Parish Schools' Career Management Specialist Dr. Amanda S. Mayeaux.

Dr. Mayeaux provides assistance on a wide-range of items from student scheduling to assignments.  Currently the students are taking between 12 to 15 hours of college credit.

“I really enjoy the limited number of classes each day, because I can focus on doing well in each course,” PHS senior Myiesha Bell said. “I also enjoy the college setting."

While the district offers numerous dual enrollment classes on the high school campuses, classes on campus allow students to experience an authentic college experience.

“I really enjoy the independence of taking courses I choose,” MSA-East junior Logan Shutt said. “The classrooms are more relaxed with students sharing their opinions and having open discussions.”

The courses are $150 per course with the school district paying $100 and the students paying $50 per course. The district is buying the textbooks, which will be reused each semester, but students pay any additional fees such as library fees or parking fees. Students have the opportunity to ride a bus to campus or to use private transportation.

 “When we consider the cost of college, the price of these courses is a great savings for parents,” Mayeaux said. “In addition, a junior has the potential to earn up to 60 hours of credit before high school graduation. Sixty hours means students enter college needing four or five semesters of additional course work for a four-year degree. TOPS covers eight semesters. The remaining three or four semesters can be applied to graduate school.”