High School Equivalency Program
The High School Equivalency Program (HEP) at the University of New Mexico – Taos is a federal program funded through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Migrant Education. HEP is designed for migrant and seasonal farm workers and their dependent children to obtain the equivalent of a high school diploma.
HEP assists in the instruction and successful completion of the High School Equivalency (HSE) exams. HEP also supports placement in universities, colleges, junior colleges, vocational institutions, military and other career opportunities.
What is a High School Equivalency Credential?
HEP provides individuals who did not complete high school the opportunity to earn a High School Equivalency (HSE) credential. A HSE may be achieved by successful completion of the General Education Development (GED®) exam or the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET®).
The GED® consists of four separate exams: Reasoning through Language Arts, Social Studies, Science, and Mathematics. The HiSET® exam consists of five subject areas: Language Arts-Reading, Language Arts-Writing, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies. Students must successfully complete all subject areas of either of these exams to obtain a HSE credential.
An HSE credential is accepted by the majority of employers, colleges and universities in lieu of the traditional high school diploma, HSE credential is also accepted when enlisting in the military.
To qualify for the UNM Taos High School Equivalency Program (HEP) applicants must:
- Have performed at least 75 days of agricultural work in the previous 24 months (2 years). Eligible agricultural work can include but is not limited to:
- Seasonal farm work, migrant farm work, ranching, fishing, transportation of raw produce, and timber harvesting
- OR eligible to participate or have participated in a migrant education program under Chapter I-Migrant Education
- OR participated in a WIA Section 167 Program
- Applicants may qualify under a parent, legal guardian or spouse that meets the agricultural requirement
- Be 16 years of age or older.
- Lack a high school diploma or its equivalent and not currently enrolled in high school
- Pass a Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE®) entrance exam
- With a minimum average score of 8.5 (equivalent to an eighth-grade education) in three main categories– Reading, Mathematics, and Language
- The TABE® may be waived for students with previous passing HSE scores
- Proof of agricultural worker status as previously defined– i.e., paycheck stubs, W-2 forms, a notarized affidavit, or a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) from a school’s Migrant Education Program
- Valid Government issued ID such as
- New Mexico Driver’s License or ID
- Tribal ID
- Military ID
- Other forms of national or foreign government ID
- Students under 18 must obtain an underage withdrawal from school with parental permission form
- Students who have previously taken High School Equivalency (HSE) exams, must submit a recent copy of official HSE scores
Students not meeting the minimum exam score, or the agricultural component of the program will be referred to other adult literacy programs.
High School Equivalency Program (HEP) Staff
General Contact Information
630 Paseo del Pueblo Sur, Suite #100
Taos, NM 87571
1157 County Road 110
Ranchos de Taos, NM 87557
Sr. Student Advisor
Sr. Student Advisor