Among the 1,881 candidates for Community College of Philadelphia’s (CCP) 53rd Commencement on May 4, six were high school students from the 2019 senior class at Mathematics, Science and Technology (MaST) Community Charter School.
A part of the second cohort to graduate under MC2, a special dual enrollment program created through a partnership between MaST and CCP in 2015, Nadeen Al-Saleem, Gilbert Drutsky, Marta Gorstka, William Hartner, Shiv Patel and Sara Wolfenden graduated with associate degrees from CCP. The six seniors, who are now CCP alumni, will complete high school and graduate from MaST on June 14.
“I think it’s an amazing experience,” said Al-Saleem, who credits MC2 with helping her win the Liberty Scholarship, which will cover full tuition and board at Drexel University. “I know they’re super selective for who they chose for [the Liberty Scholarship], and when I said I was going to graduate with my associate’s, I’m sure they thought, ‘Wow, that’s amazing.’”
The MaST high school students entered the dual enrollment program as sophomores, taking a combination of college-level courses, alongside their high school classes. When they enter college, they will not only have a high school diploma, but also 60 college credits and an Associate Degree in Business or Health Care.
“I could have my bachelor’s degree by the time I’m 20,” said William Hartner, a graduate from the MC2 program who was accepted to both Duquesne University and Temple University for political science. “The two-year head-start really does help out a lot and it will save me financially too. Being here is a different experience from high school. It's different classes, so that prepares me for whatever college I do decide to attend.”
Programs, such as MC2, provide an accelerated career track for Philadelphia’s motivated and talented high school students. As more local students begin taking college classes during their high school years, Philadelphia will be able to develop a more knowledgeable and skilled workforce.
“The MaST and Community College of Philadelphia partnership has connected our students with a unique and valuable opportunity that most high school students are not given,” said John Swoyer, CEO of MaST.
During a recent academic year, the College had more than 1,400 high school students taking college classes. In addition, CCP announced on May 9 that it will begin another dual enrollment program with John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School, scheduled to commence with two cohorts for the 2019-2020 school year.
“Our dual enrollment programs provide an accelerated career track for Philadelphia youth allowing them the opportunity to explore academic paths leading to a College degree and to enter the workforce more quickly,” said Dr. Donald Guy Generals, president of the College. “The regional workforce benefits as the city increases the college-going rate.”
To learn more about high school student programs offered at Community College of Philadelphia.