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Seniors Graduate with Free College Education

Some students from Orange County Public Schools earned both a high school diploma and an associate’s degree because they participated in dual enrollment classes through Valencia College.

Seniors Graduate with Free College Education

More than 30 graduating seniors from 12 Orange County Public Schools (OCPS) high schools walked across the graduation stage last month with more than just a high school diploma. These students also earned an associate’s degree through participation in the district’s dual-enrollment program.

The dual-enrollment program allows eligible high school students to pursue postsecondary coursework at Valencia College while earning credit toward high school completion. Students in the program can enroll in a combination of advanced placement courses, which earn college credit if they pass their exam, and Valencia College courses. An agreement between Orange County and Valencia College allows for dual-enrollment students to take their college courses free of charge, including books.

The students from across the district who completed enough college coursework to earn their associate’s degree and completed all of their general education requirements include:

-Sarah Munyon, Aundria Cohen and Annika Nichols from Apopka High School
-Crisd’Liz Garcia and Brielle Findley from Boone High School
-Michael Corniter, Angeles Bautista and Nicole Juarez from Colonial High School
-Timothy Castaneda from Cypress Creek High School
-Monica Berti from Dr. Phillips High School
-Mikayla Kearney and Hala Saedi of East River High School
-Ayanna Wallace and Joshua Hanson of Edgewater High School
-Kayla Minehart of Wekiva High School
-Betty Maxi and Noel Berrios of West Orange High School
-Samantha Bhagratie, Krystal Castillo, Laura Hernanadez, Hannah Latchman, Rena Lathbridge, Valentina Martinez Padron, Valentina Nino, Sheila Polich, Daniella Salas, Sebastian Tarazona and Ceqoyah Clay of Lake Nona High School
-Aliza Noormahamid of Ocoee High School
-Victoria Galarza, Gabrielle Garcia and Tatyana Meiklejohn of University High School

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Lyndsay Fogarty Lyndsay Fogarty has had many roles at Central Florida Lifestyle, working her way from intern to contributing writer to managing editor. She is a graduate of the University of Central Florida’s Nicholson School of Communication where she earned her degree in journalism. Along the way, she has learned that teamwork and dedication to your craft will get you far, and a positive outlook on the present will get you even farther.

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