LFHS Seniors Earn TSC Associate Degree Prior to Graduation

Two Los Fresnos High School seniors are celebrating earning dual diplomas that will enhance their college experience.

Aracely Garcia and Nicholas Gutteridge graduated with an Associate of Arts degree in General Studies from Texas Southmost College on Saturday, May 14, 2022.

The two graduates were able to accomplish this through the Dual Enrollment program in which eligible students enroll in college courses while attending high school. Garcia and Gutteridge both had an early interest after hearing about the opportunity during their College and Career Readiness class in middle school. Both students took a few courses during their Freshman year, before taking a small break.

When the pandemic hit, they took advantage of the remote learning opportunity to stack several courses. Courses included English, Government, History, Mathematics, sciences, component area options and electives.

“The challenge of the heavy work load has taught me how to handle responsibilities as I move on to college at Texas A&M College Station to complete my Bachelor’s Degree,” said Nicholas Gutteridge.

Aracely Garcia is an All-State musician who also served her class as president of the Chess Club and secretary for National Honor Society. In addition to earning her Associate’s, she earned certifications in EKG and EMT through Career and Technical Education.

“The time invested in obtaining my Associate degree will allow me to ease the pressure of the considerable adjustment of leaving home for college,” said Aracely Garcia, who plans to attend Texas A&M Corpus Christi on a music scholarship.

High school students admitted to the Dual Enrollment program must meet the same requirements as all other college students within the guidelines established by The Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Garcia and Gutteridge’s TSC Associate Degree hours will transfer to their chosen colleges and universities.