Vernonia High School is offering dual credit for students who enroll in either of two new Digital Arts classes.
Students can take Video Production I and Graphics for Multimedia with Digital Arts instructor Doran Lower and receive both high school and college credit simultaneously. College credit is through Portland Community College (PCC).
“The idea of these classes is, not only to have other electives available in our school, but also to provide our students with the opportunity to receive free college credits before they actually leave high school,” says Lower.
According to Lower, both classes are being made available as part of the high school Career and Technical Education (CTE) program. Funding to establish the program came from PCC and the Vernonia School District CTE Grant. The CTE grant purchased a new Creative Cloud 2014 Adobe Suite of software for Lower’s computer lab.
Lower is an approved dual credit instructor through PCC. Once enrolled in the high school class, students can register for PCC credit and then have eighteen weeks to complete the work required for the ten week college course. Lower inputs grades for students into the PCC system.
Both courses are worth four college credits each. This year Lower offered Video Production I during the first semester with nine students, while Graphics for Multi Media is being offered during the current semester and has seven students enrolled. Lower says he plans to offer both classes again next school year and is hoping to have more students enroll.
“I’m hoping to get more students interested next year,” says Lower. “These classes might sound intimidating to some people, but they’re not as intimidating as they might sound. There’s a certain level of expectation but if someone wants to do it and put in the time, effort, and work they can be successful.”
In Video Production I students learn about shooting with digital camcorders in full high definition, focusing on using manual focus, angles, and exposure. They also work in editing using Adobe Premier software.
Senior Makayla Adams took the Video Production class last semester and used the skills she learned to help her complete her Senior Project. “I really enjoyed the class,” says Adams. “We created our own video, filmed it, learned how to edit it, learned about different camera angles and lighting, and learned how to use the computer program to put it all together into a seamless video. I liked it because it felt professional and we weren’t talked down to. We were treated like we were mature and would be able to get the work done. It felt like a real college class.”