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The paths to early graduation with ANSEP

November 1, 2019

For any high school student, planning out a career path might seem like a daunting task. There are a lot of pressures to figure it out quickly and also choose a career, but the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program can help students go from eighth grade to a baccalaureate degree in six years. Whether it is graduating from high school early, or trying to figure out how to prepare for college, the components available to high school students set them on the right track.

In fact, each of the components is set up so students can earn college credit while still in high school. Students also explore a variety of different science, technology, engineering, and math careers, and are with students who share the same passions.

At the high school level, ANSEP offers full-time academies for students in the Matanuska-Susitna and Anchorage school districts. These components are similar to regular high school but they offer a more advanced curriculum. By progressing through the component, students also get the opportunity to graduate high school quicker and earn two years or more of credits towards a bachelor’s degree at University of Alaska campuses.

High school students in the full-time Acceleration Academy component, can earn college credits towards degrees in education, business management, biological sciences, civil engineering, psychology or liberal studies. From the beginning of the full-time component, students will have the ability to accumulate college credits that apply towards a University of Alaska Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree.

Meanwhile, students from across the state are eligible to apply for Acceleration Academy (Summer). While in Acceleration Academy (Summer), students spend five weeks on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus and are hosted for housing, meals and transportation for the entire time. During the academy, students explore careers in STEM fields, learn from university faculty for the chance to earn college credit, and get on a path for college readiness and a career. Students can apply for the 2020 summer component this month.

The ability to earn college credit while still in high school puts ANSEP students further ahead of their peers and gives them a jumpstart before entering their first year of college. Plus it helps the student’s family save on the cost of college. This is also a big benefit for the student as they don’t have to spend time in college on remedial courses. While the component focuses on STEM careers, it also supports students who are interested in all kinds of careers.

To help students figure out the right career path and build on their college readiness even more, ANSEP also offers a Summer Bridge component for high school graduates. Summer Bridge students enroll in a college math course and work a paid internship with one of ANSEP’s strategic partners in the summer before going off to college.

Students can also enroll in the ANSEP components at any point in their high school career. That means a student doesn’t have to figure out their career path on the first day of ninth grade. But those who do enroll when they are in eighth grade can go to to a baccalaureate degree in six years. They will also put themselves on a path to success, early high school graduation, and college and career readiness.

ANSEP also offers other components for students as young as fifth grade. Learn about the middle school components at