State education leaders laud VU for outstanding Early College Program

Indiana Early College Model - Highlights from Ben Davis University High School and Center Grove High School

March 04, 2024

VINCENNES, Ind. – Vincennes University’s pioneering efforts in dual credit and early college education continue to receive accolades as two state education leaders recognize the transformative impact of VU’s Early College Program in Indiana. 

As the first university in Indiana to offer dual credit courses and the first to implement the early college model in the state’s high schools with Ben Davis University High School being the flagship school, VU has long been at the forefront of innovative educational practices.

In a new Indiana Department of Education video, Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Chris Lowery and Indiana Secretary of Education Dr. Katie Jenner visit Ben Davis University High School and Center Grove High School and commend all VU Early College High Schools for their commitment to student success and the stellar outcomes of their graduates.

According to Jenner, “We need to empower every single high school in Indiana to offer access to opportunities like this, and the opportunities that we have seen at these two schools (Ben Davis University High School and Center Grove High School), it has set them up for life.”

The VU Early College Program provides students with the opportunity to earn a VU associate degree, Indiana College Core (ICC) or certificate of graduation while still in high school, empowering them to accelerate their academic journeys, access higher education much more affordably, and seamlessly transition into college.

Lowery points to a 100 percent college acceptance rate for a class of VU Early College graduating seniors and describes the achievement as “phenomenal.”

Jenner praises Early College High Schools for their commitment to providing valuable work-based learning opportunities, recognizing the significant impact on students’ career readiness and practical skill development.

“These high schools not only offer credentials of value that these students are earning in many cases prior to high school graduation, but they also are really leaning into adding work-based learning,” Jenner says. “Specifically, at Ben Davis University High School, they are leaning all in to the apprenticeship model. Students were eager to talk to us about the learning and the skills they’re developing in an industry sector of interest.”

VU Associate Provost of K-12 Programs and Partnerships Dr. Lori Pence expressed VU’s pride in the recognition, “At Vincennes University, we are committed to breaking down barriers to higher education and empowering students to reach their full potential. The University’s Early College High Schools embody this commitment, and we are honored to receive recognitions from Mr. Lowery and Dr. Jenner for the positive impact Early College has on students’ lives.”

VU’s Early College offers a wide range of benefits to high school students, including:

  • Access to rigorous college-level coursework taught by qualified instructors.
  • Opportunities to earn college credit at an affordable cost.
  • VU administrators embedded in their schools provide advising and college and career coaching.
  • Learning coaches support student success.
  • VU personnel assist school counselors in registering students for dual credit classes and other processes associated with VU dual credit classes.
  • Enhanced preparation for additional college education and successful careers.

For more information about VU’s Early College Program, visit Watch the Indiana Department of Education video at

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