What is the Mathematics and Science Academy?
The Mathematics and Science Academy (MSA) was established by the 79th Texas Legislature in May 2005. It was designed as a commuter program at the University of Texas at Brownsville for high school-aged students who are gifted in mathematics and science. Students take classes from UTB faculty with regular UTB students, but are provided with more supervision and guidance than traditional college students.
Where are the Mathematics and Science Academy students housed?
All Academy students will be housed in two rooms (EDBC 2.112 and EDBC 2.114) in the Education Business Complex Building.
How safe is UTB?
UTB is a safe university patrolled by campus police. Off limit areas and other age-appropriate rules promote security. The student health center is available for student issues and the nearest hospital is minutes away. Under our Emergency Response System, on-call professionals provide counseling, support, and companionship until parents arrive.
How much does it cost to attend the Mathematics and Science Academy?
The Academy is funded by the University of Texas at Brownsville and from the Foundation School Fund. The Academy will pay for tuition, fees, and books. It will be the student’s family responsibility to provide for meals.
Is transportation provided to UTB?
At this time, MSA does not offer transportation to its students. It is the student’s family responsibility to transport their student to and from the Academy.
What will a typical day be for students of the Mathematics and Science Academy?
Academy students will report to campus by 8:30 a.m. will be dismissed at 3:30 p.m. Students will follow their class schedule as would any other UTB student. Students will be required to return to the Academy rooms when they are not in class.
Do Academy students have a social life?
Some Academy organizations offer numerous leadership and service opportunities, from yearbook and Student Council, to musical and theatrical groups and intramural athletics. The University sponsors dances, game and activity nights, movies, plays, and recreation, with the Bougainvillea Ball an annual highlight. Academy students are at liberty to participate in many of the UTB sponsored organizations and events.
Is there a dress code?
Neither the University nor the Academy imposes dress restrictions. Academy students are however expected to dress appropriate for school.
What happens to students who leave before graduation?
Students who leave for academic, behavioral, or personal reasons are eligible to return to their high schools. Most, however, will enroll in a university or a community college, or take correspondence courses before applying to college. College credits earned at MSA remain on their transcripts.
What academic help is available?
Free tutorial services are offered to students. Supplement seminars on time management, note-taking, and study skills are also offered. A full-time counselor is on staff, in addition to a full-time adolescent psychologist who provides confidential assistance with the high school-to-college adjustment.
What are graduation requirements? Students must complete 60 - 68 required semester credit hours with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (B average). A wide range of elective course options is available. Graduates receive an advanced high school diploma including college credits. The MSA academic advisor provides invaluable assistance with college applications and scholarship procurement. Seminar presentations covering college essay composition and other application essentials are offered.
Where do graduates attend college? Academy graduates are able to attend any school in Texas or any prestigious universities on the east and west coasts.
How do I decide if MSA is right for me?
Come visit us on informational sessions that will take place in the Spring of 2013. These will be held at UTB at the Education and Business Complex Building. you can also schedule an appointment by calling 956-882-5727 so that you can make an informed decision.
Keep in mind:
- A good MSA student prospect seeks a career in math, science, engineering, or related disciplines, including becoming a math or science teacher.
- Their counterpart (who prefers not to apply to MSA) may be terrific at math & science, but does not seek a career in these fields.
- An MSA student prospect is academically bored, having nearly exhausted his high school's math options by 10th grade.
- Their counterpart may take advanced math at a nearby college, although not likely among classmates of his age.
- An informed MSA candidate knows the academy will be alive with music, Student Government Association, yearbook, newspaper, intramural sports, and many other activities.
- Their counterpart is satisfied with the current extracurricular calendar and UIL athletics.
- An MSA prospect will earn two years of tuition-free college credits which will transfer to prestigious universities in Texas and beyond.
- Their counterpart may also leave high school early, but probably not with two years of tuition-free credits.
- An MSA prospect understands that rules ensure safety and respect for both the individual and community.
- Their counterpart may have difficulty tolerating mandatory student hours and seminars.
- An MSA candidate is an academic risk-taker who demands greater challenges.
- Their counterpart may feel sufficiently challenged at his present school.
- MSA students know they will live, work, and play among peers who match or exceed their intellect.
- Their bright counterpart has no daily contact with a diverse group of 40 teens of equal or greater intellect.