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WKU, Barren County High School partner on Capstone Scholars Program

WKU President Gary Ransdell will visit Barren County High School on Sept. 20 to launch a Capstone Scholars Program.

WKU’s second Capstone Program will be offered with WKU’s Ogden College of Science and Engineering. The first was with Fort Thomas Highlands High School in November 2010 with WKU’s Potter College of Arts & Letters.

The partnership will provide as many as 19 college semester hours of dual credit for Barren County High students in the area of agriculture and chemistry, according to Bo Matthews, district superintendent.

“We have hundreds of students taking chemistry and agriculture classes, participating in agriculture related competitions and projects and serving in the Future Farmers of America organization on all levels,” Matthews said.  “Many of our alumni are graduates of Western Kentucky University and majored in agriculture.  So, this not only made perfect sense, but it vastly expands the opportunities for our students, and that’s the bottom line.”

WKU-Glasgow Director Sally Ray worked closely with Matthews in crafting the agreement and gained the support of WKU President Gary Ransdell and Jack Rudolph, Head of WKU’s Department of Agriculture.

WKU-Glasgow is pleased to have the opportunity to work with Mr. Matthews, Mr. Riley and Barren County Schools in establishing the WKU–Barren County High School Capstone Scholars in Agriculture,” Dr. Ray said.  “Through this partnership students will be exposed to an extremely high level of college level content and gain an enormous amount of knowledge and experiences in agriculture before ever leaving Barren County High School.”

Matthews said a steering committee has been established and is planning to make the partnership signing a very special event.

“We are planning for this as we would for any major event,” Matthews said.  “Working with Dr. Ray, Mr. Riley, our ag teachers and students, we are planning to have a luncheon, agriculture-related demonstrations and exhibits, and we’ll invite a lot of local, regional and state leaders with an interest in agriculture to attend along with our WKU friends.  It’s going to really be special.”

The signing ceremony will begin at noon.  The planning committee is expected to finalize further details soon.

Contact: Bo Matthews, (270) 651-3787; or Sally Ray, (270) 659-6900.

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