Bethel Expands its PSEO Programming

Previously only available to high school seniors, Bethel’s PSEO program will now be open to both juniors and seniors who live in Minnesota. Also new this year, Bethel will offer a selection of online courses to provide PSEO students with more flexibility than ever before. Interested students can apply now to start classes this fall.

By Cherie Suonvieri '15, content specialist

June 18, 2021 | 8 a.m.

Student at Bethel University

Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) allows Minnesota high school students to earn college credit while still in high school at no charge. Students interested in PSEO at Bethel can apply now to start this fall.

This fall, Bethel will welcome a new group of PSEO students to campus, and for the first time, high school juniors will be part of the incoming class. Previously only available to seniors, Bethel’s PSEO program will now allow Minnesota students to earn up to two years’ worth of college credits during high school—and thanks to new online course options, a Bethel experience is now more accessible to students from across the state.  

PSEO, also known as Postsecondary Enrollment Options, is a program through the Minnesota Department of Education that allows high school students to earn college credit while still in high school. There is no charge for tuition, books, or course fees, so students who participate often save thousands of dollars on tuition. Students can participate in PSEO at most public and private colleges throughout the state of Minnesota, but PSEO at Bethel stands apart from other school options.

“PSEO at Bethel represents a great opportunity for all students, but especially those who are undecided about their major,” says Bret Hyder, director of undergraduate admissions. “Through PSEO, students have the chance to explore their interests, be mentored by university faculty, and study within a faith-based community—all while getting ahead on their college credits.”

For students who take their PSEO courses in person, living on campus is an option if they will be 17 years old by move-in day. Since room and board is not covered by the Department of Education, families are responsible for this portion of the bill. But even if students don’t live on campus, they’re welcome to participate in Bethel’s extracurricular activities including musical groups, clubs, theatre, intramural sports, and more.

For students who need more schedule flexibility or who don’t live within driving distance, Bethel offers a variety of online course options. But just because courses are online doesn’t mean the sense of community is lost. Throughout the pandemic, courses took place face-to-face with COVID-19 precautions, as much as they were able. At times, though, classes adapted to an online environment to ensure the health and safety of the Bethel community. That’s when faculty and students got creative to continue the hands-on learning and relationship building that Bethel is known for, even in a virtual environment. Those experiences have prepared faculty to create dynamic online learning environments in the years to come. 

In the fall, classes will look much like they did before the pandemic, and current students, faculty, and staff are looking forward to welcoming PSEO students into a new season at Bethel. “We’re very excited about this opportunity for high school students to get an even bigger head start on their college experience,” Hyder says. “And the fact that they get to do that here at Bethel—where they’ll be truly supported, challenged, and valued—is really special.”

PSEO at Bethel

It's not too late to apply for this fall! Every year, PSEO students at Bethel save thousands of dollars on tuition, and most students love their experience so much, they continue at Bethel after their high school graduation.

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