The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

May 7, 2013

GRA offers college courses

AUSTINBURG TOWNSHIP —  International students at Grand River Academy can now begin post-secondary studies at the campus, through a partnership with John Carroll University.

Called “The Aspire Program,” the partnership will allow the school’s international students to begin college courses at GRA with the option to continue those studies at John Carroll University after graduation.

GRA has more than 120 male students in grades nine through 12 on its rolls, and 20 of them are international students from China, Rwanda and Japan.

Headmaster Tim Viands said the Aspire program furthers GRA’s “steadfast” mission to reach out and boost up at-risk high school boys.

“GRA accepts and enrolls students who have ability, but have not realized their full potential,” he said. “The Aspire Program furthers GRA’s mission as our international students have the ability, but have not achieved their goal of attending an American university.”

Accepted students will attend GRA as seniors or post-graduates with “conditional acceptance” to JCU, Viands said.

The acceptance to JCU is contingent upon the successful completion of The Aspire Program and proficiency in the English language, Viands said. Students will also have the ability to earn college credit for approved GRA course work.

“JCU is known for its business, science and humanities schools, as well as its full slate of NCAA Division 3 athletic teams,” Viands said.

For more information on GRA’s programs and enrollment, visit


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