Henry Ford Early College to celebrate move to HFC Oct. 20

DEARBORN — Henry Ford Early College, a program that enables high school students to earn college credit and receive certification in a health-related profession, will celebrate its relocation to the campus of Henry Ford College Oct. 20. 

HFEC, in its seventh year, is a partnership with HFC, Dearborn Public Schools and Henry Ford Health System, in coordination with the Wayne County Regional Educational Service Agency and State Board of Education. HFEC, which graduated its first class in May 2012, is funded by a state grant.

The official ribbon-cutting ceremony takes place at 6 p.m. in the Learning Resource Center on the main campus of HFC, 5101 Evergreen.

Under the program, students in grades nine through freshman year of college simultaneously complete high school, earn a significant number of college credits and receive certification in an allied health profession like pre-nursing, radiographer, respiratory therapist and pharmacy technician in a five-year curriculum. Students are from 17 school districts in Wayne County and receive medical training and instruction at Henry Ford Health System flagship Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

In recent years, HFEC has ranked in the 99th percentile of the Top-to-Bottom rankings of Michigan schools. HFEC’s goal is to prepare students for employment in health careers. Students begin this five-year program as a freshman and complete it as fifth-year seniors, earning a high school diploma as well as an associate’s degree, a health career certificate, and up to two years of transferable college credits.

There is no cost to parents or students to take classes through HFEC. The cost of tuition, books, and fees are paid through the state school foundation grant.

During ninth and 10th grades, students are enrolled in high school classes with an emphasis on math and science. They also spend one day each week at Henry Ford Hospital gaining real world experience in clinical rotations.

Introduction to college classes begins in the 10th grade, and by the 12th and 13th years students are almost exclusively enrolled in college classes.
“The Early College provides students who are traditionally underrepresented a wonderful opportunity to pursue a college education,” said Marva Brooks, program coordinator for Henry Ford Health System. “Henry Ford looks forward to continuing our role with exposing students to real-world learning in the health care environment.”

“The Henry Ford Early College program continues to make a significant difference in the lives of our students,” HFC Board of Trustees President Hussein Berry said. “We are very pleased with the success that our students have achieved so far and will continue to achieve throughout their lives.”

HFEC Principal Majed Fadlallah said parents, staff and students of HFEC “are all very excited and extremely impressed with the new facility. We are appreciative of the investment that the college has made in our school, and we will use the ‘power of site’ to increase our student achievement even more.”

Many HFEC graduates have earned acceptance to four-year colleges and universities, including the University of Michigan, University of Michigan-Dearborn, Michigan State University, Wayne State University, Eastern Michigan University), Central Michigan University, Ohio University, and DePaul University in Chicago.

Two HFEC alumni celebrated major milestones in the last year, before the age of 20. Sarah Kazbour was the first student from HFEC to graduate with her associate’s degree in nursing at age 19. She graduated from HFEC with more than 75 credits and is working at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital while taking classes toward her undergraduate degree in nursing at Ohio University.

In August, Mikaylah Heffernan, 18, was the first HFEC student to graduate from HFC’s Biotechnology Program. She is attending MSU and is majoring in Political Science/Pre-law.    

“The goal of HFEC is to help students receive practical real-world experience during high school and earn college credit,” HFC President Stan Jensen said. “All of the HFEC students graduate with a leg up on their college education and professional careers. We are very proud of the work they’ve accomplished at the Early College and they are inspiring examples to all students.”

To learn more about the Henry Ford Early College, go to http://earlycollege.dearbornschools.org/.