Skip to main content

Young Scholars Academy

Earn college credit during your last two years of high school.

The Young Scholars Academy is a highly selective partnership between the Kenton County School District and Northern Kentucky University. A limited number of scholars are selected to take a full-time college course load on NKU’s campus for their final two years of high school at an extremely discounted rate! Scholars have the opportunity to earn 60 hours of college credit and/or an associate’s degree while working with a small cohort of motivated, like-minded scholars working toward degrees with a focus in STEM, integrative studies, supply chain, and computer science!

What makes YSA different?

  • Full immersion on a college campus.
  • Full focus on your 4 year degree.
  • Cohort model.
  • Academic advising.
  • Relationship to home high schools
  • Parent communication
high school students on a campus tour

Why Do Dual Credit?

Academic Health

According to American Institute of Research, high school students enrolled in early college are significantly more likely to:

  • graduate high school
  • enroll in college
  • earn a 4-year degree

Financial Health

  • 2 years of college complete at a 79% discount
  • Savings of over $22,000 just during YSA

Emotional Health

  • Student Agency
  • Coordinated Care


Verify that you are eligible to apply. To be considered, you must:

  • Be a current 10th grader at a participating school.
  • Be meeting college readiness benchmarks on your most recent CERT.
  • Have a cumulative unweighted GPA of a 3.0 or higher.

How to Apply 

  • Review the scoring criteria for YSA admission
  • Submit your application. 
  • Complete KYOTE math testing with a qualifying score OR submit an official ACT math score of 19 or higher to your counselor. (Register for KYOTE testing and parent camp here).
  • Complete your parent release form. Submit to the appropriate counselor at your high school.
  • Your counselor will complete a recommendation form for you once your application is submitted to them.

How much will it cost?

Find out how much you'll save compared to a traditional NKU student.


KHEAA Dual Credit

Who: All 11th grade duel credit scholars

Payment Method: Reimbursement 

Amount: Current tuition rate for 2 courses (~$444)

Needs-Based: No

Application: Yes, completed in advising

Funding Source: KHEAA

YSA Scholarship

Who: YSA only

Payment Method: Reimbursement

Amount: Up to $5,000

Needs-Based: Yes

Application: Yes, completed by scholar.

Funding Source: Grant Funds

Who Do I Contact?

General YSA Questions or Parent Camp

Dr. Winona Landis, YSA Program Coordinator:

Dr. Amanda Dempsey, Kenton County Early College Supervisor: