During the summer week of June 5th, the Summer Arts Camp took place at MSA. Eighth through tenth grade campers from all over the state roamed the campus, seeking a true arts experience for a solid week. At the same time, an ACT workshop took place in the Phoenix assembly area. Attendees from all over the region traveled to MSA for a week-long workshop where students got first-hand assistance in ACT prep.

Summer ACT workshop attendees from all over the region gather in the Phoenix to enhance their test-taking skills.

When asked who traveled the farthest, some raised their hand. “Where are you from?” asked Ms. Dot McClendon, MSA’s ACT coordinator. Places such as Simpson County, Walthall County, Amite County, and Jackson were a few of the answers, locations within 50 miles. The winner was a high school student from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, traveling over 200 miles to Brookhaven!

ACT is vitally important at Mississippi School of the Arts. Although there is no minimum ACT score requirement upon acceptance into the public residential high school, students meet or exceed the national average scores. Since the spring of 2015, the Mississippi Department of Education has required 11th grade public school students statewide to participate in ACT testing. The data produced from the mandated test allows MSA to rank on a statewide and national level. Due to the non-traditional school admissions process and atmosphere, students come to MSA from varying socio-economic backgrounds all over the Magnolia state.

During the spring 2015 testing session, the class of 2016 received a 21.8 composite score, placing in the top three state-wide. By graduation, many of the students received a much higher score, resulting in full scholarships to major universities around the state and nation. For example, A’Mya Jones, a theatre arts major, scored a 36 on ACT writing. That top accomplishment awarded her a full scholarship to Ole Miss (University of Mississippi). Again, that’s just one example of many.

ACT® is a registered trademark of American College Testing.


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