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Delaware County Community College, Serving Delaware and Chester Counties

Chester County Sisters See Value and Savings in College’s Dual Enrollment Program


Brooke, Ellie and Paige Hostetter

Left to right -- Brooke (left) is in the red and white striped top; Ellie (center) is in the flowered blue top; Paige (right) is wearing the pink necklace.

(Chester County, PA • July 1, 2015)—Sisters Ellie and Brooke Hostetter of Oxford are taking full advantage of an educational opportunity that allows them to earn college credits at a substantial tuition discount at Delaware County Community College while they are still in high school. “It has helped our daughters immensely,” said their mother, Judy Hostetter.

The Hostetter sisters are among more than 1,300 students who have capitalized on the College’s dual enrollment program, which allows qualified high school students from Chester and Delaware counties to take college courses at a reduced tuition rate saving as much as 70 percent off the College’s normal tuition and fees. “It is a wonderful way for students to receive an affordable head start on their college education, and the credits are transferable to four-year colleges and universities,” said College President Dr. Jerry Parker.

“It is a fantastic opportunity for our students,” said Jennifer Williams, dual enrollment coordinator at Oxford Area High School. Oxford not only accepts the Hostetter sisters’ college credits toward high school graduation, but weights the credits similar to honors or advanced placement courses.

Ellie, 18, earned a remarkable 30 credits from Delaware County Community College and this fall will transfer her credits to Harcum College, where she will study dental hygiene. Having completed all of her general education credits for Harcum at Delaware County’s Downingtown and Pennocks Bridge campuses, Ellie expects to complete Harcum in two years, instead of the normal three. “Dual enrollment has been such a great opportunity,” she said. “You get a head start and you save a lot of money.”

Delaware County Community College operates Pennocks Bridge as a joint venture with the Chester County Intermediate Unit. The campus is within the Technical College High School in West Grove.

Brooke, 17, plans to take classes both online and at Pennocks Bridge in the fall and spring. A rising senior at Oxford Area High School, she also is considering transferring the credits she earns to Harcum College, which would reduce the time it takes for her to earn an occupational therapy assistant bachelor’s degree.

Ellie and Brooke’s sister, Paige, 20, a graduate of Oxford Area High School who wants to be a nurse, wishes she had participated in dual enrollment. However, she still benefited from the College by taking courses in Allied Health at Pennocks Bridge. She subsequently enrolled in the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences in Lancaster and received an associate’s degree in nursing this year. 

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