Celebrating Columbia Early College High School’s Class of 2022

Published 7:26 pm Saturday, June 11, 2022

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The members of the Class of 2022 at Columbia Early College High School celebrated their high school graduation in Columbia. The dual enrollment program, which allows students to start taking college courses while in high school, saw 47 students presented with high school diplomas, seven of whom also received associate’s degrees through Beaufort County Community College.

Students who also earned degrees through BCCC had participated in a larger ceremony with graduates from the college and other early college high school students in May. They are headed off to universities, the military and the workforce. Students who did not complete a degree still have the option to finish at BCCC or transfer credits to a university. Andrew Etheridge completed an associate in arts, but plans to continue at BCCC to earn an associate in applied science in criminal justice technology.

Graduates were recognized for different achievements at the ceremony. Andrew Etheridge, Destiny Harrison, Haylie Kimball, Zoe Maready, Vaniah Melton, Kaylyn Varner and Jeslyn Vo all received degrees through BCCC.

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Blaine Hassell earned the Most Improved Award, Raquel Gutierrez-Cruz earned the Beatrice Calderon Citizenship Award, Destiny Harrison earned the President’s Award for Academic Achievement and Haylie Kimball earned the President’s Award for Education Excellence.

Ruth Fauth, Deyleny Guadalupe Garcia, Raquel Gutierrez-Cruz, Destiny Harrison, Vivian Hua, Haylie Kimball, Zoe Maready, Leah Payne, Chris Truong, Kaylyn Varner and Jeslyn Vo all graduated with honors.

Jeslyn Vo was the salutatorian and Zoe Maready was the valedictorian.

Cumulatively, the class earned over $417,000 in scholarships.

John Maurice, president of Mid-Atlantic Christian University, addressed the graduates.

Every high school in BCCC’s four-county service area has students who participate in dual-enrollment programs. At Columbia ECHS, students can choose to stay a fifth year to complete college courses, though all students in the Class of 2022 graduate together. This means that students who prefer a traditional high school education can graduate in four years and choose not to take any college classes, though most of the Class of 2022 graduated with some college credit.

BCCC also partners with Washington County Early College High School, Mattamuskeet Early College High School and Beaufort County Early College High School and qualified students from all area high schools, including Washington, Northside, Southside and Washington Montessori Public Charter high schools, can take free college classes through Career and College Promise.

“BCCC wishes all the best to its early college students,” stated a BCCC press release.