LISD’s Early College program prepares students for the healthcare field

With the high demand for high-quality, personalized healthcare careers, Laredo Independent School District Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College students are taking the right steps to meet the demands of the ever-changing healthcare system. .

Early in students’ high school careers, Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College High School prepares students with a curriculum and internships specifically designed to help students understand the concepts and skills associated with science. health and increase their awareness of health-related courses.


Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Health Science Magnet School opened for learning in August 1999. It was designed as a place where students interested in the field of health sciences could receive an advanced specialized curriculum with experiments practical and real to help them understand and embrace their chosen field.

With over 300 students currently enrolled, Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College conforms to the Early College High School plan which provides the fundamental principles and standards of an Early College in Texas. The school targets students at risk of dropping out and who might otherwise not attend college, including first-generation students, students of lower socioeconomic status, English language learners, and students with disabilities.

Cantu Early College is an open enrollment program that encourages and considers applicants from all students, regardless of background or academic achievement and is offered the opportunity to earn 60 college hours at Laredo College. The goal of the program is for all students to earn an associate of science degree while taking courses that prepare them for a career in the medical field. They also have the option of graduating with one of the following state certifications: Certified Health Care Aide, Emergency Medical Technician, Dental Assistant, and Veterinarian.

The institute of higher learning that partners to provide Cantu Early College students is Laredo College. The school also works in conjunction with the Department of Health Sciences and the Department of Manpower at Laredo College.

Cantu Early College students are far beyond the typical high school student as they are not only enrolled in their high school curriculum courses based on grade level, they are also expected to enroll in a number given college hours also by grade level.

The number of college courses a student takes depends on how well they pass the Texas Success Initiative Assessment (TSIA2). By taking and passing this exam, students will be considered college ready and able to take the courses necessary to graduate. college degree and associate degree.

In addition to being enrolled as students in the Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College program, students are encouraged and allowed to participate in extracurricular courses like music, sports, and fine arts.

Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College High School is under the direction of Geraldina Arredondo and has 20 teachers and one counselor. Most First College teachers are also Laredo College adjunct educators, meaning they teach co-op courses that serve to give students credit at both the high school and college levels.

Students at Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Early College are held to high standards because of the importance of the career path they have chosen and their desire to make a difference in the healthcare community. health. The school prides itself on producing not only skilled and educated students, but also the passionate, caring, and selfless leaders of tomorrow who will benefit our healthcare system in the future.

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