A record number of Johnston County Middle College students graduated with either a degree or a certificate in the Class of 2017.
Of the 75 graduating seniors, 20 earned an Associate in Science or Associate in Arts degree, which are two-year college transfer degrees that will transfer to a four-year university. One student earned the Early Childhood Certificate.
According to JCMCHS Principal Sheila Singleton, this is the largest number of students to do so since the school opened.
Middle College serves students in 11th and 12th grades only, unlike Johnston County Early College Academy and Johnston County Career and Technical Leadership Academy which serves students in grades 9 through 12, with a 5th super senior year.
Middle College students are not required to choose a pathway of study. They complete their high school requirements while earning transferable college credit, an Associate of Arts, an Associate of Science Degree, or a certificate in an area of study.
The non-traditional school is designed for students who have demonstrated the ability to be high achievers and are capable of meeting the challenge of honors level work. Students attend classes, which are smaller in size, at Johnston Community College.
According to Singleton, the number of students earning a degree or certificate in years past usually ranges between 10 to 14 graduates, while most students earn about 30 semester hours or one year of college credit.
She credits the record number of students earning degrees or credits to students being more focused on their career and college plans. She said the counselors at Middle College help students achieve their goals by creating a plan to complete a degree and then frequently monitoring their progress.