Early graduates join Class of 2012

Senior Dress-Up
Events like Senior Dress-Up Day (May 18) included early graduations as well as the Class of 2012. Photo by Meera Norton

As graduation day approaches, seniors get ready for their big day as they exit high school and move on with life as adults. However, seniors are not the only ones who will be preparing for graduation: many juniors will also be joining them by graduating a year earlier than scheduled.

Juniors have different reasons for wanting to graduate early, although one reason stands above the rest: to leave high school as soon as possible.  Ahmad L. says that he just wanted to finish high school as soon as possible.

“I want to leave this school,” he said. “I can’t wait to get to college.”

Juniors may also want to graduate early to get ahead of their peers.

“I think I wanted to graduate early because I just wanted to get ahead and get my degree and all that stuff,” Sarah B. said.

The state requires graduating students to have the necessary 26 assorted credits to receive their high school diploma, adding another obstacle for those who want to graduate early.

Sushita A. says that doubling up in her classes scheduling the necessary classes was the only difficulty she faced in her quest for early graduation.

“Getting the classes done early was kind of stressful because I had to double up for basically every class,” she said.

Sarah B. also found trying to finish all her classes to be very stressful and found that she had to dedicate much of her summer to school work.

“Giving up my summer, all my summers, and even after summer school I’m still taking online classes and having like five classes in a semester,” she said. “It took dedication and hard work just to say, ‘Okay, I want to do this, I’ll just keep on going.'”

Sarah B. is thankful to both counselor Dawn Walls and site intervention facilitator Tommy Miller for helping her throughout her quest for early graduation.

“I had to go to them several times when I felt that my schedule was crazy and I didn’t know what class to take or how to take it,” she said. “Mr. Miller and Mrs. Walls were a great help.”

Although those who graduate early have an accelerated version of high school, Ahmad still feels as though he had the fullest high school experience available at Kerr.

“I still did all of the senior activities,” Ahmad said.

Senior activities include the Senior Auction, the Senior Parade and of course the end of the year Prom.

Overall, Ahmad feels glad that he will be graduating before his fellow juniors.

“I feel happy,” he said. “I feel like I just saved a year of my life.”