Parkland students, I’m going to tell you about a great way to expand your special academic ability or creative interest while you’re here with us—and gain recognition (and even money) for it through a little extra effort.
Completing an “A with Honors” project in your Parkland class this semester can both challenge and encourage you. Students do not need to be a member of the Honors Program to complete an A with Honors project.
Those who complete an A with Honors project can receive a $100 scholarship,* and students who complete three Honors projects, have a GPA of 3.5, and participate in the Honors Symposium (spring semester) are awarded a $500 graduation scholarship.
You can see some of our projects on the award-winning SPARK (http://spark.parkland.edu/).
A with Honors Project Proposals for full semester classes are due by Friday, March 13. Thirteen-week class Project Proposals are due no later than April 3. You can find the Proposal Form at my.parkland.edu (look under Student Services>>Academics>>Honors Program>>Forms tab).
As you can see above, it is highly beneficial to join the Parkland College Honors Program if you are eligible. You may join the Honors Program with a GPA of 3.0, acceptable credentials from your high school or another college, or a unique academic ability or creative interest. Membership in the Honors Program and completion of Honors Projects expand student horizons, challenge students academically, and provide students with recognition on transcripts and resumes.
In addition, students who graduate from the Honors Program are eligible to participate in Honors at the University of Illinois (most of its colleges) and at other universities and colleges around the state.
Finally, I want to encourage you all to participate in Parkland Scholars, a student organization that fosters academic excellence and success. Parkland Scholars works in conjunction with the Honors Program to sponsor campus-wide events and participate in service learning projects and activities.
If you are interested in joining Parkland Scholars or the Honors Program, please contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
*must also be in the Honors Program.
The first time I walked into Parkland College was in 1994. I remember parking in what I now know to be the B wing and attempting to find the Admissions office (which resulted in me visiting the X wing and, somehow, the L wing). As a December ’93 graduate of Champaign Central High School, I knew that I wanted to transfer to a university, but I didn’t want to jump into that university life right away. Thank goodness for Parkland College.
While I made lots of wrong turns trying to find classes (signage is so much better now!), I never made a wrong turn in my course selection due to fantastic Parkland advising, and I was able to transfer and successfully complete my bachelor’s degree.
Parkland Pathway to Illinois Program
Parkland College has been a partner with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for almost 50 years and has successfully transferred thousands of students. Seven years ago, the two institutions came together to create a new initiative, the Parkland Pathway to Illinois program. This program offers a selective group of students the opportunity to be enrolled at Parkland full time and also take a course at the University of Illinois every semester. Students receive individualized counseling at Parkland and at Illinois and can live in University housing.
Other benefits include guaranteed admission to the University of Illinois and paying a discounted tuition rate based on Parkland College tuition. The Parkland Pathway to Illinois program does not replace the traditional transfer programs that Parkland College offers, but it aims to enrich opportunities and open the door to the University of Illinois to more students.
How to Apply
Two separate groups of steps let a student apply to the Parkland Pathway to Illinois program. The first is for high school seniors to first apply to Parkland College in a transfer program (they will have to reapply even if they took dual credit courses in high school). They can apply by clicking here and can find a list of transfer degree programs here. Once they are admitted to Parkland College, students then schedule an assessment test. This test, used for Parkland course scheduling purposes, must be completed by April 1.
The second group of steps begins February 15, which is the day that the University of Illinois Parkland Pathway to Illinois application opens. High school seniors would create their myillini.illinois.edu account and apply to the Parkland Pathway to Illinois program. To apply, students must have the following:
- Access to their high school courses and grades
- ACT and/or ACT scores sent electronically to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- 300-word (max.) essay related to their interest in the major they wish to study at the University of Illinois (a full list of undergraduate majors is available here)
- Any other items required.
Once all parts of the University of Illinois application have been received, Pathway applicants will be reviewed for admission.
The Parkland Pathway to Illinois program is not the only way to transfer to the University of Illinois, but it is a way to slowly get used to the university environment while enjoying the benefits of the award-winning faculty, small class sizes, and personalized resources of Parkland College.
Questions about the Parkland Pathway to Illinois program can be directed to Beth Chepan, Parkland College Admissions and Records, 217/351-2887 or Holly Herrera, University of Illinois, email@example.com.
I will bet that most University of Illinois students are not aware of how many of their fellow students are taking courses at Parkland College while attending Illinois. The numbers might surprise you, because so many are taking our online courses; thus, they are almost in “stealth” mode.
In fact, about 400 Illinois students will take one or more Parkland College classes this spring. It is not unusual to see that number swell to around 2,000 Illinois students during the summer term.
The online course format allows students to complete their Parkland courses around Illinois classes, work schedules, and social activities; this is the most popular mode for taking our classes. Students who prefer the traditional course format take classes at our campus in the afternoon, late afternoon, and evening so they will fit in with their busy schedules.
Some Parkland courses traditionally have a significant number of Illinois students enrolled. Examples include online Physics 121 and 122 (the equivalent of Illinois’s PHYS 101 and 102) and basic general education courses like Psychology 101 (equivalent to PSYC 100) and History 105 (equivalent to HIST 172)—a nice choice to meet the Illinois Cultural Studies: Western/Comparative and Humanities and the Arts: Historical and Philosophical Perspectives requirements.
Of course, in order to enroll in any courses, you’ll need to complete some basic tasks. You can begin the process of applying to Parkland as a Course Enrollee (a person not working toward a degree or certificate at Parkland) online by going to http://www.parkland.edu/getStarted. As a current Illinois student, you would be considered a “concurrent enrollment” student at Parkland.
You can find procedures and forms for domestic students at the University of Illinois website, at http://provost.illinois.edu/programs/advising/Concurrent_Enrollment_domestic.pdf. Procedures and forms for international students are available at http://provost.illinois.edu/programs/advising/Concurrent_Enrollment_international.pdf. Please note the instructions very carefully. You must meet Parkland’s prerequisites for the courses and must verify this by bringing with you your Academic History from Illinois Student Self-Service.
If you are wondering how Parkland courses transfer to Illinois, check out the transfer course matrix at http://online.parkland.edu/transferpatterns/index.cfm.
So, if you are looking to squeeze in one more course or maybe looking for a different time or a format that you are unable to get at Illinois, taking a class at Parkland College might just be for you. We would love to have you!
Parkland College is open until Dec. 23 to take your registrations.
Please note that all Parkland College transfer classes are freshman and sophomore level. For additional enrollment information, contact Parkland’s Office of Admissions.
Director, Counseling and Advising Center
I’ve served here six years as the advocate (supporter) for student rights and responsibilities, providing both a means for students’ voices and guidance for students’ conduct. I seek to help students if they can’t figure out who to see or what to do about a situation on campus; I also help them reach their instructors if they’re out of class for an extended time. I’ve been working with students for more than 20 years because I like students, especially community college students. In fact, this is the third community college I’ve worked at in my career.
OK, enough about me. Let’s talk about you.
You want to be successful and complete your educational dream, right? Everybody’s vision is different, so that could mean a certificate or degree that takes you right to your career, or transfer to a university to finish a bachelor’s degree. How about I give you some tips from time to time about how you CAN change your dream into an achievable goal?
Why change your dreams into a goal? Well, a dream is just that…it’s wishing and hoping for something that may or may not come true. When you set a goal, you plan observable actions towards an end result to be achieved within a more or less fixed time frame. So, let’s dream a big goal (say, a Super Bowl-sized one, because that’s what graduating is like).
OK, the first tip I want to give you is this: You are the boss of you, so take charge of your plan by seeing your advisor, registering for your classes and having your payment arrangements, Financial Aid, or Nelnet™ completed by the deadlines. Remember, Parkland’s Spring 2015 semester registration is going on NOW.
Next, you become the coach for TEAM YOU. This means you need to develop a game plan to achieve your goals for completing all the necessary courses with good grades. This success takes you over the goal line, into the end zone, and you become a Parkland College graduate. (I’m a football fan so I do make those kinds of sports references.) You need action plans to help you, and we’re going to talk further and hear from successful students to help you plan your game-winning strategies.