Testimonial Thursday

It's February 28, and we haven't had a Testimonial Thursday in awhile, so let's do one today.  This one comes from Fatima in Montana, a parent of two American School graduates.  She writes, "The kids are doing great.  Erin has made the President’s list again, so she is happy, and Kilean is back on the Dean’s list, so he is happier.  They are both trying to get a Fulbright scholarship of sorts to England this summer.  I truly am sooooooo glad we did American School.  It taught them to be self-sufficient when it came to their schooling, which has carried on into their college education."  We are grateful for Fatima's words and even more grateful that she chose to enroll her children with us.  If you want to do the same, we invite you to enroll today!

Today’s Birthday: John Steinbeck

It's February 27, and author John Steinbeck was born on this date in 1902.  Some of you may have already read Of Mice and Men, and it's his other most famous work, The Grapes of Wrath, that we'd like to discuss in today's blog.  The Grapes of Wrath chronicles the struggles of the Joad family during the Great Depression.  Because they lived in the Dust Bowl of Oklahoma, the Great Depression was especially difficult on the Joads and their friends, so they headed westward to California in the hopes of finding a better situation.  The Grapes of Wrath is a great example of how different subject areas intersect.  It's a piece of fiction set in very real historical circumstances.  Math and science often intersect too.  You often need to perform mathematical operations to complete your scientific experiments.  The American School does its best to give students a complete education.  We encourage writing across our curriculum, and our graduation requirements include several English, math, science and social studies courses.  Whether you are going to college or entering the workforce after earning your accredited high school diploma, you'll be well-prepared for whatever challenges come your way after you enroll with us! 

Travis Pastrana Finishes 10th at Daytona

American School graduate Travis Pastrana finished 10th in the Nascar Nationwide Series race at Daytona International Speedway over the weekend, finishing behind Nascar legends Tony Stewart and Dale Earnhardt Jr. among others.  This weekend Travis and the Nationwide Series head to Phoenix for a race Saturday afternoon.  We wish Travis all the best, including a safe race, as he continues his young Nascar career.

American School Celebrates African-American History Month

February is African-American History Month, and with the month winding down, today is a good opportunity to mention several American School courses that contain works by African-Americans.  First, our American Literature course contains works by Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Nikki Giovanni, Alice Walker and Zora Neale Hurston.  Our Literature 1 course contains works by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Maya Angelou, Richard Wright and Eugenia Collier.  Our Literature 2 course contains works by Alice Walker and Maya Angelou.  Finally, our Literature 3 course has a unit on classic American poetry which includes works by Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, Jean Toomer and Claude McKay.  The four courses above are all paper-based, but online exams are available for American Literature and Literature 3.  The American School does its best to ensure that all ethnic groups are represented in our courses and that we have a wide variety of subjects available to appeal to all backgrounds and interests.  Take a look at all of our courses and see for yourself!

Today’s Birthday: George Washington

It's February 22, and George Washington, the first President of the United States, was born on this date in 1732.  His birthday is a good occasion to say a few words about the first President of the American School, a man named R.T. Miller.  He and some of his colleagues at Harvard and MIT had a vision.   They wanted to make courses available to people who otherwise might not be able to take them.  R.T. Miller and his friends founded the American School in 1897, and a couple years later, the School moved to Chicagoland, where we've been headquartered for more than a century.  Unlike George Washington, who set a precedent by being President of the United States for just two terms, R.T. Miller served as President of the American School for 48 years until 1945.  His vision has helped more than three million students earn their accredited high school diplomas, and, if you enroll today, you can be next!

Today’s Anniversary: The Telephone Book

It's February 21, and on this date in 1878, the first telephone book was issued to residents of New Haven, Connecticut.  For years, the most common way for students to get help from us would be to use their telephone book, find our number and call us, but recently that has changed.  Students can still call us at 708-418-2800 during regular business hours or 866-260-7221 around the clock, but now they can email the appropriate department and expect a reply within one business day.  Many students find email communication more convenient, and so we are happy to provide this service to them.  Students should log into the Online Student Center and click on the "Contact the American School" link to receive a list of departmental email addresses.  Whether by phone or by email, we are happy to provide caring student service to all of our students! 

Today’s Anniversary: The Postal Service Act

It's February 20, and on this date in 1792, George Washington signed the Postal Service Act, a piece of federal law that established the United States Postal Service.  Where would the American School be without the Post Office?  Certainly it would've been nearly impossible for us to be called a correspondence school without it.  Though we have always gotten a handful of exams walked into our offices each day, those numbers pale in comparison to the thousands of exams that arrive each day in the mail from students across the country and around the world.  Then, after our highly-qualified instructors hand-grade and include personalized feedback on those exams, they're mailed back to those same students.  Over the years, the Post Office has tried to adapt to the changing times, and the American School is doing the same.  Though we continue to have a robust offering of paper-based courses, we know that more and more people prefer to do work online.  That's why we have printable and online enrollment applications that can be accessed through our enrollment page.  We also have introduced online courses and online exams in select paper-based courses, and you can read all about them on our Online Learning page.  Like the Postal Service, the American School will always be around, but we look forward to offering our services to students in new and exciting ways! 

Today’s Birthday: Nicolaus Copernicus

It's February 19 and Nicolaus Copernicus was born on this date in 1473.  To say that he was a renaissance man is an understatement when you consider that Copernicus was a mathematician, astronomer, lawyer, physician, priest, diplomat and economist.  Most people would lead a fulfilling life having just one of those professions!  Perhaps Copernicus's most famous accomplishment was his creation of a heliocentric model of the universe; that is, he created a model of the solar system and universe that had the sun, and not the earth, in the middle.  If you are in our College Preparatory Program and have an interest in science, we have good news for you.  Our College Prepatory Program requires you to take an additional science course.  We call that the Science Elective, and taking that extra course in science will better prepare you for college.  It's another example of how the American School is student-centric and places the needs of our students at the center of our universe!  

American School to Attend WSCA Conference

Just one week after returning from a very successful conference in Texas, the American School is back on the road next week.  We'll be attending the Wisconsin School Counselor Association Conference at the Monona Terrace in Madison.  While we enjoy meeting counselors from all across the country, we take special pleasure in greeting counselors from our neighboring states.  If you're attending the conference, please stop by table 49 on Tuesday, February 19, from 4-6 p.m.; on Wednesday, February 20, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m.; and on Thursday, February 21, from 8 a.m.-11 a.m.  (A quick side note: If you stop by our booth on Wednesday, February 20, be sure to wish our booth rep a happy birthday!)  As usual, we'll have plenty of Independent Study information available, including enrollment applications, and we'll also have some of our famous convention freebies to distribute.  We look forwarding to seeing you there! 

Today’s Special Occasion: Valentine’s Day

It's February 14, Valentine's Day, and love is in the air.  From time to time we survey our students so that we can learn what we are doing well and how we can better serve our students.  On this day, it's appropriate to discuss three things that our students love best about the American School.  Finishing in a virtual dead heat for second place are our course materials and our structure.  Our course materials for paper-based courses include textbooks, study guides and, in some cases, examination booklets.  We do our best to make our course materials as educational and engaging as possible, and our students seem to appreciate our efforts.  When students like our structure, they are referring to the way our educational process works.  Structure includes things like the way our courses are organized, the pattern of doing self-check tests at home and then submitting unit exams to the School, where they are graded by instructors with at least 24 hours of college credit in the subjects they grade, and more.  But far and away the thing our students love best about us is the ability to work at their own pace.  Indeed, that is what sets us apart not only from classroom schools but also from other distance learning schools.  If students want to work quickly through a subject, they can.  If they need more time in a subject, they can do that too.  Enroll today and we'll do our very best to ensure that you love us too!