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Columbia MD, 21044
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Admissions Requirements Procedure - 50.03.02

College Policy Number/Title:

Credit Admissions

All students applying for admission to Howard Community College (HCC) are required to provide specific information whether they are applying for standard admission, selective and competitive admission, or readmission. Selective and competitive programs may require additional information. While an open access institution, HCC reserves the right to refuse or revoke admission to individuals who pose a current or future safety risk to students, faculty, staff, and campus visitors. All applicants must agree to comply with the college’s policies and procedures and the student code of conduct.

Selective and Competitive Admissions Programs

HCC has selective and competitive admissions requirements for certain programs. Information pertaining to admission into these programs is available in the office of admissions and advising, in the college catalog, in program publications, on the college’s website, and in other publications as appropriate. Application fees vary based on the program.

Secondary School Students

Various enrollment options are available to secondary school students. In addition to general Maryland State laws and college policies regarding admission to the college, specific policies and procedures apply regarding the admission of dually enrolled eighth through twelfth grade students. As with all other students, admission to the college is not a guarantee that a student can enroll in specific courses unless appropriate prerequisites are fulfilled. HCC reserves the right to grant admission to secondary students, including home-schooled students, on an individual basis. Consent to enroll is dependent on fulfillment of specific application requirements and on what the college determines to be in the student’s and its own best interests.

Articulation agreements exist between the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) and HCC that enable students who have completed specific high school courses or programs to receive college-level credit at HCC. These credits are based on the specifications and requirements stated in these agreements, and the HCC area of study the student selects. These agreements are subject to change and do not guarantee transfer of any credit awarded for high school coursework to other colleges and universities.

The award of high school credit based on HCC coursework is arranged through a student’s high school and does not involve the college in any way.

Dual Enrollment

High school students juniors and seniors may enroll part-time at the college through HCC’s Dual Enrollment program. Credits earned may apply toward high school graduation under certain circumstances. High school students who reside in Howard County and who are dually enrolled at HCC in credit classes during the fall, winter or spring semesters are eligible for a discount on tuition. Private school or home-schooled students are also eligible. The Dual Enrollment program has been designed to facilitate the enrollment process. Students who participate in this program must complete Dual Enrollment application procedures. Public and private schools also have their own procedures that must be followed.

Gifted and Talented Students

Students in the eighth through tenth grades may be considered for the Dual Enrollment program at HCC if they have completed the seventh grade and are enrolled in a public or private school’s gifted and talented program or can otherwise demonstrate exceptional abilities. Home-schooled students must demonstrate completion of seventh grade coursework in all academic areas and otherwise demonstrate exceptional abilities. Application procedures include completion and submission of the general HCC online application form, submission of middle school grade reports or high school transcripts, and test scores as appropriate, an appropriate score on the college’s placement exam, and demonstration of social and emotional maturity as evidenced by a recommendation from the school counselor. An interview with an admissions advisor is required at which at least one parent or guardian must be in attendance. Parents of eighth through tenth graders must complete Dual Enrollment Application addendum agreeing to specific conditions related to their students enrollment. Enrollment decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. Students in eighth through tenth grades may not enroll in developmental mathematics or English classes. Exceptions to this rule include: eighth grade students who are eligible to enroll in MATH-070 and those students who would like to take the course as a review.

Early Admission

This full-time enrollment option is available for high school seniors only. It enables them to complete high school graduation requirements through full-time enrollment at the college, including at least one college-level English course and one college-level mathematics course, under strict circumstances. The college’s application procedures include completion of the early entrance program application, appropriate placement testing, and an interview with an admissions advisor during which at least one parent or guardian must be in attendance. Students must consult with their high school guidance office for specific high school procedures and for the courses required to satisfy high school graduation requirements. Consent from the appropriate high school officials is required.

JumpStart Program

The JumpStart Program is designed in partnership with HCPSS to provide students with the opportunity to earn up to 60 college credits while in high school. Students participating in selected career and transfer program pathways may earn a college degree within one year of graduating from high school while certain students may earn an associate’s degree when completing the 60 credit option. Structured programs are limited to certain HCPSS high schools and specific HCC career and transfer programs. The flexible option is open to all students either at their home high school or by attending HCC during their academic year. Interested students should speak with their high school guidance counselor for more information on the structured and flexible options.

Graduating High School Students

The college has a variety of programs designed to benefit graduating high school students who will be incoming freshmen. While these students can matriculate via standard application procedures, the programs for incoming freshmen, including Freshman Focus, James W. Rouse Scholars, Schoenbrodt Scholars, and Silas Craft Collegians, offer specific advantages. Some of these programs are selective or competitive. Application fees vary based on the program.

Home-Schooled Students

The same general policies and procedures, including restrictions that apply to public and private dually enrolled students, early admissions students, and students who have graduated from high school also apply to home-schooled students. Due to the unavailability of traditional high school transcripts, placement test and college entrance exam scores have a greater importance in admissions decisions. An interview with an admissions advisor, during which at least one parent or guardian must be in attendance, is required for eighth through tenth grade students. Parents or guardians of eighth through tenth graders students must complete an addendum to the HCC general application agreeing to specific conditions related to their students enrollment. Whenever recommendations are required, at least two of the recommendations must be provided by individuals other than the student’s parents or guardians. As is true for other dually enrolled and gifted and talented students, the primary purpose for the enrollment of home-schooled students must be for academic enrichment and not to supplement or substitute for coursework that comprises the student’s secondary school curriculum. HCC grants admission to home-schooled students on an individual basis. Consent to enroll is dependent on fulfillment of specific application requirements and on what the college determines to be in the student’s and its own best interests.

Transfer Students

Transfer students follow general application procedures. Specific procedures apply for transfer students seeking credit for prior college-level coursework.

Military Personnel, Veterans, and Dependents

The application fee for initial admission to the college is waived for active duty military personnel and their dependents and for honorably discharged veterans of the United States Armed Forces and their dependents. See procedure 50.03.01, State and County Residency Requirements, for further information on residency/domicile provisions.

International Citizens

Admission eligibility and tuition rates vary for international citizens based on immigration and residency status and federal and state laws. All applicants who are not United States citizens are required to verify their immigration status with specified official documents. Photocopied credentials are not acceptable. Students who believe they may qualify for in-state rates should consult the office of admissions and advising.

F1 Students

International citizens seeking admission to credit learning programs with F1 immigration status must consult the office of admissions and advising regarding the college’s specific requirements for the issuance of the I-20 Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status. Requirements include completion of the college’s application for F1 student status; application fee; proof of English proficiency; certification of adequate finances; and official secondary or postsecondary transcripts translated into English. F1 students admitted to HCC must show proof of health insurance that covers health care in the United States during the time of enrollment. Specific application deadlines apply based on the term for which students are seeking admission. F1 students must consult the office of admissions and advising whenever they plan to leave the United States during the period of time covered by their I-20, seek an extension of stay, apply for employment authorization or optional practical training, or transfer to another institution.

F1 students attending other colleges or universities may attend HCC if they have satisfied specific admissions requirements, including adherence to standard application procedures, presentation of proof of their immigration status (I-94); and submission of a letter of consent from the institution that issued their I-20 granting consent to enroll at HCC during fall and spring terms.

F1 students seeking to change their academic level from the English Institute (EI) to credit degree programs must apply for a new I-20 from the office of admissions and advising and must meet all specified credit F1 admissions requirements. An additional application fee is required when applying for a change of academic level.

International citizens seeking admission as F1 students to the college’s EI must consult with the EI.

Undocumented Immigrant Students

Under the Maryland Dream Act, undocumented immigrant students seeking enrollment to credit programs may pay in-state or in-county tuition under certain conditions as identified by Maryland law. Undocumented immigrant students must contact the office of admissions and advising regarding the specific requirements of this law. Students who attended high school in the State for at least three years beginning with the 2005-2006 school year or who earned the equivalent of a high school diploma (e.g., by passing the GED exam or completing the requirements for the National External Diploma Program) beginning with the 2007–2008 school year may be eligible for in-state or in-county tuition. To be eligible for a non-resident tuition exemption, students must attend HCC within four years of high school graduation. Eligibility for in-county or out-of-county tuition is based on the location where the immigrant student completed high school, or in the case of earning a diploma, where they last attended high school in Maryland. Requirements under the provision of the law include completion of the college’s admissions application; verification of attendance for at least three academic years and graduation from a Maryland high school or equivalency; documentation that the immigrant student or the student’s parent or legal guardian has filed a Maryland income tax return through specified periods; submission of an affidavit stating that the student will file an application to become a permanent resident within 30 days of becoming eligible to do so; and proof that eligible individuals have registered with the selective service system. Students who demonstrate documentation as Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals (DACA) who reside in Howard County or the State of Maryland may be eligible for an in-county or in-state tuition benefit. Students must contact the office of admissions and advising to determine eligibility.

Students Seeking Readmission

Students who previously attended the college may need to update admissions information. This step is generally required if a student has not been in attendance for two or more years, but may also be required for other reasons. When necessary, a new application must be completed and proof of residency submitted upon request; the application fee will be waived.

Students who are suspended for academic reasons are entitled to appeal their suspension. The notification regarding academic suspension provides detailed information about the appeals process. Students who are suspended for academic reasons as of a specific term, who also seek readmission for that term, must submit a letter to the readmissions committee through the office of completion services requesting readmission approval. Students who have not been enrolled for five or more years may be eligible for academic amnesty, as outlined in the college catalog.

Nurse Education Program Readmission

Students who are not successful in their nursing courses and who do not progress in accordance with both the sequence and the timeframe as designated in the course catalog, will not be able to progress through the Nurse Education Program. Readmission is based on seat availability and it is highly unlikely that a seat will be available for readmission. Please note that a student may be readmitted only once to the Nurse Education Program.

The accelerated nursing program does not include a readmission option. Former accelerated nursing students should instead seek readmission to clinical coursework through the traditional registered nursing program. Readmission to all other nursing program options is contingent on specific criteria, submission of a new supplemental nursing application by the stated deadlines, and available space. Readmitted students may have to complete various curricular components, a nursing assessment exam, and demonstrate other competencies. Students seeking readmission to clinical nursing classes must consult the nursing student handbook to determine the most current re-entry procedures.

Readmission procedures for the clinical coursework in all nursing and allied health clinical programs are subject to change. Students should contact the office of admissions and advising for further information.

Applicants Involved in Prior Disciplinary Actions

Any applicant involved in previous, current, or pending disciplinary action at another school or postsecondary institution is required to indicate this information on the application for admission to HCC. HCC reserves the right to refuse admission for any applicant involved in previous, current, or pending disciplinary action if that action is deemed to be a threat to the campus community. The college will assess such threat by considering the age of the student when the activity occurred, time elapsed since the activity occurred, nature of the activity, any evidence of rehabilitation provided by the student, likelihood the student will commit a similar act, and likelihood of a similar act to negatively impact the institution.

Applicants involved in previous, current, or pending disciplinary action at another school or postsecondary institution may be required to:

  • complete the required sanctions applied by the sanctioning school or institution;
  • meet with a representative of the student conduct review committee; and
  • provide requested documentation to the student conduct review committee.

Applicants Involved in Prior Criminal Actions

HCC reserves the right to revoke admission for any applicant involved in previous, current, or pending criminal action if that action is deemed to be a threat to the campus community. The college will assess such threat by considering the age of the student when the activity occurred, time elapsed since the activity occurred, nature of the activity, any evidence of rehabilitation provided by the student, likelihood the student will commit a similar act, and likelihood of a similar act to negatively impact the institution.

Applicants involved in previous, current, or pending criminal action may be required to:

  • meet with a representative of the student conduct review committee; and
  • provide requested documentation to the student conduct review committee.

Noncredit Admissions

Anyone 16 years old or older may register for eligible noncredit classes offered through the division of continuing education and workforce development using noncredit registration processes. Students under 16 may take noncredit courses listed for their age group through the college’s Kids on Campus program. Additional procedures are generally required.

International citizens seeking admission to HCC’s EI with F1 immigration status must consult with the EI regarding the college’s specific requirements for the issuance of the I-20 Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status for this program. Applicants must be at least 16 years old. Other requirements include completion of high school; submission of EI F1 student application materials and the associated application fee; certification of adequate finances; verification of completion of secondary school or postsecondary transcripts; and proof of health insurance that covers health care in the United States during the time of enrollment. Admission is conducted on a rolling basis, but students are strongly advised to apply six to eight weeks before the start of the term for which they seek admission. F1 EI students must consult with the EI whenever they plan to leave the United States during the period of time covered by their I-20, or when they seek an extension of stay, apply for employment authorization, or transfer to another institution.

Effective Date: 04/17/20

President's Office Use: VPSS - CAT

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