HuntCo public school academies have Dec. 15 application deadline

Eighth graders from across Hunterdon County have until Friday, Dec. 15 to submit applications for one of Hunterdon County Vocational School District’s full-time, science- and engineering-based academies. HCVSD’s academy model stands apart from other offerings at traditional high schools. While others list a set of courses under a broad umbrella, HCVSD academies guarantee a comprehensive, highly focused, sequential program with specific ties to college and career.

“There is no match in Hunterdon County for these specialized academies,” said Tanya Nalesnik, Coordinator of Student Services for HCVSD. “Academy students don’t just string together courses; they are steeped in their concentration area.”

Students and parents can learn more from the district’s website (www.hcvsd.org), where each academy is described in detail and an online tool starts the application process.

The Environmental Sustainability & Engineering Academy has a customized classroom surrounded by acres of land and resources that make a perfect setting for outdoor learning. This one-of-a-kind program blends the best elements from a national curriculum for agricultural science, the Advanced Placement curriculum for environmental science, and the nationally recognized Project Lead The Way curriculum for engineering. The academy instruction takes place at the Hunterdon County Educational Services Commission campus in Califon and Voorhees High School in Glen Gardner.

The Biomedical Science Academy is designed for students with an aptitude for this high-growth career field. It combines the strength of the Project Lead The Way curriculum with the accessibility of Rutgers University. Its hands-on experiences include capstone projects that encourage students to explore biomedical innovations. Classes are held at North Hunterdon High School in Annandale.

The Computer Science and Software Engineering Academy prepares students to succeed at jobs in the high-demand tech field. Beyond its use of the Project Lead The Way curriculum, this academy prepares students for college or workforce entry through hands-on instruction including a capstone project. Like other academies, it forges real-world connections with universities and other institutions. Starting in fall 2018, students accepted into this academy will attend classes at Voorhees High School. HCVSD is in the process of designing flexible work spaces “a la Google” for an enlarged, enhanced computer science academy there.

The three academies are among five distinct schools offered by Hunterdon County Vocational School District to serve high school and adult students. The largest is Hunterdon County Polytech, the district’s shared-time high school that prepares students for a seamless transition to college and career paths. HCVSD also operates an Adult and Continuing Education school. Learn more atwww.hcvsd.org.