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Washington Junior: Running Start AMA

gigi_egigi_e 2 replies2 threads New Member
I am wrapping up my second quarter of RS in Washington as a junior, and I wanted to do an "ask me anything" for those of you considering running start for next year. Feel free to drop a question below!
edited April 1
2 replies
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Replies to: Washington Junior: Running Start AMA

  • susanmary1231susanmary1231 1 replies0 threads New Member
    So, I know this was a month ago but if you are still interested I have a few questions. So, I am a sophomore in high school in honors classes and have always been a pretty good student. My options for next year are IB or Running Start. I’ve had some trouble making the decision because I’m hearing so many things from different sides. I know people who have hated either and people who have loved either. The main pro for me is saving so much money for college. But, a high school experience has always been very important for me. I’m also worried about the classes being stressful and too hard and I’ll end up not doing well anyway. Also, I want to make sure that Running Start has all the positives I've been interested in. I also know that Running Start depends a lot on the classes you’re taking, the CC, and the person themselves.

    1. Did you feel like you lost a lot of your high school experience?

    2. Are your classes a lot harder than than high school classes or IB/AP would’ve been?

    3. Where you are on track right now doesn’t it look like your credits work out and you will save the money you need to for college?

    4. How do you and the people around you seem to be different in your enjoyment of Running Start? What kind of people doesn’t it work out for?

    5. Do most people coming out of honors seem content?

    6. What classes seem to leave people more stressed out?

    Sorry for the length and all the questions but I have had a really hard time making this decision.

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  • gigi_egigi_e 2 replies2 threads New Member
    edited May 12

    Sorry, I haven't checked my college confidential account in a while. Hopefully this can still help you. One question I have to ask you first is: what college are you considering? I haven't started applying to colleges yet, but I am 90% sure that in-state schools (Like UW) are the only ones that will take all of your credits. I'm pretty sure most out of state schools will not take them because they were done during high school (again, I'm not sure though because I haven't started applying).

    Also, from my experience, classes done during Running Start are SO much easier than AP/IB. I mostly say this because I am full-time, so I am only taking 3 classes at a time. If you are considering part-time, you may want to look at your class schedule and see how much of a workload you can handle. But as a full time running start student, I went from 3.7's and 3.8's in high school to a straight 4.0 GPA every quarter at BC. I am not saying that they are a complete breeze, though. You have to be self motivated to do the work, but it is very attainable (personally at times it can be easier than high school because of the quarter system, and most of the professors are chill).

    I personally love Running Start. But then again, I hated the traditional high school experience, and it is important to you, so we have differing perspectives. I came into it knowing zero people and now have a lot of running start friends. I would say pretty much any/every class you take (at BC at least) will have at least a few Running Start students, so you don't have to worry about being the only 17 y/o. One downside though is you will likely be taking different classes than your friends every quarter, so this can be a con if you like to have close friends that you stay with all year. I liked it because I was able to meet new people every quarter though.

    1. I went to a private school before, and hated it. I am someone who doesn't really care about school dances, football games, parties, etc. The school was very cliquey and I didn't really "vibe" with anyone there so I didn't have many close friends. From what you've written, it seems like you like being involved in school activities. If you are, there is a chance you will get FOMO when you see stories of people going to HS dances and whatnot. But personally, I feel like I haven't missed a thing because they aren't important to me.

    2. The classes are so much easier IMO. The flexibility is so nice too. My school day lasts a maximum of 3 hours on campus (depending if you're taking online classes or not). During winter quarter my first class was at 12:30. Having only 3 classes and a short schedule gave me so much more time to work on studying for the ACT, Working at my job, and I usually have time to do whatever I want by 4-5 pm.

    3. I am just earning my associates of Arts and Sciences, only because I don't entirely know what I want to major in. I'll probably be able to cut off a year of college, because I have been taking a variety of classes, and not focusing on one major. I'd say to maximize the money saved and credits that can be applied to your major going forward, you have to know what you want to major in and follow the course equivalency guide (UW has a great one). I know someone who knew that they wanted to be a Business Major at UW, so they started their junior year and got an Associates in Business degree and are now a junior at Foster (UW Business school) at 18 years old, on track to graduate in 2 years.

    4. Every person I know that I have met in my classes all love running start. If you get involved (clubs, talking to ppl in classes, etc), you will see that there is a huge community of RS Students, and everyone I have met has been so chill and kind. People who do Running Start are the chill people who don't really care about popularity or typical high school stuff. I've never really met someone who didn't like running start, but if you like high school social settings or are very extroverted, consider doing part time running start so you can still go to school events and whatnot.

    5. I don't exactly know what you mean here, but I am assuming you mean coming from taking honors courses in high school. I was taking 2 honors courses and 1 AP my sophmore year and went to running start, and I am very content.

    6. It depends on what your skills are and the professor you get. Use ratemyprofessor to find the good teachers and 99% of the time you will not be stressed out. I was getting B+'s and A-'s in math during high school, so when I went to take college calculus at BC, I was a little worried. I made sure to use ratemyprofessor, put in the time/work to understand the material (which is so much easier with a good teacher!), and came out of it with an A. Honestly, the workload of a CC course is not as much as you would expect.

    Some other things to note:

    -if you want to apply to out-of-state schools, and the college requires teacher recommendations, this can be a bit difficult since you typically only see professors for 11 weeks (aka your LOR's may not be very strong).

    -Same thing as above, but your high school counselor

    -I will get back to this note once I have applied to colleges and gotten my acceptances, but I am not sure if out-of-state colleges prefer "traditional" students (i.e. AP/IB and high school classes) over Running Start Students for applications. In-state schools will basically guaranteed accept you (and your credits) as long as you have a good GPA (during and before RS), good test scores, etc.

    TLDR: Full time Running Start classes are very manageable and pretty easy to get an A in, Other RS students are chill and nice, use RMP, if you want to graduate college earlier to save money make sure you are checking what courses you need for your intended major.
    edited May 12
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