Early College Programs

Overview

USM Early College encompasses three distinct, future-focused academic programs that allow high school students to experience college-level learning and coursework and earn college credits. Through the Early College programs, students take college classes with USM professors at one of the university’s three campuses or online, or take an equivalent course taught by a trained and certified teacher at their high school.

Early Study Aspirations

The Early Study Aspirations (ESA) program allows high school students to take college courses at any one of USM’s three campuses or online. Students have the opportunity to engage and participate in college courses and learn directly from USM faculty, while getting a sense of the university environment and earning college credits at a reduced tuition rate. ESA students may take introductory USM courses in order to get a headstart on their intended college major requirements, while others may use ESA as an opportunity to challenge themselves and try out the college setting and workload. Students have full access to on-campus resources.

For more information, visit the Early Study Aspirations page on this site. Please contact Jamie Austin, Early College & Program Coordinator with additional questions.

Concurrent Enrollment

USM’s Concurrent Enrollment program allows high school students to take USM courses taught by a Concurrent Enrollment instructor (a teacher from the student’s high school) in their familiar, supportive high school environment. Concurrent Enrollment instructors work with USM faculty to ensure the college courses delivered in Maine high schools are consistent with the content and quality of courses delivered on USM’s three campuses. Students experience the rigor of college-level coursework while continuing to have access to the support and resources offered by their high schools. All credits earned in a Concurrent Enrollment course can be transferred to the University of Southern Maine. Students curious about college-level learning and earning college credits to apply towards an undergraduate degree are well-suited to Concurrent Enrollment courses.

For more information, visit the Concurrent Enrollment page on this site. Additional questions may be directed to Jamie Austin, Early College & Program Coordinator if you are a student, or Meghan Cadwallader, Director of Educational Partnerships if you are a high school teacher or administrator.

Project ASPIRE Mathematics

Project ASPIRE Mathematics is a special Concurrent Enrollment program offered by USM’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics. Students take college-level courses in Statistics or Calculus taught by a teacher at their high school. Project ASPIRE instructors work with USM faculty to ensure the college courses delivered in Maine high schools are consistent with the content and quality of courses delivered on USM’s three campuses. Students experience the rigor of college-level coursework while continuing to have access to the support and resources offered by their high schools. All credits earned in a Project ASPIRE course can be transferred to the University of Southern Maine. Students curious about college-level learning and earning college credits to apply towards an undergraduate degree are well-suited to Project ASPIRE courses.

For more information, please contact Jamie Austin, Early College & Program Coordinator if you are a student, or Laurie Woodman, Lecturer of Mathematics and Early College Faculty Facilitator and Therese Martin, Administrative Specialist for the Department of Mathematics if you are a high school teacher or administrator who is interested in offering Project ASPIRE Mathematics.