Why I Got My Associate Degree In High School

In May 2018, I graduated; and no, it wasn’t from high school. I had graduated from a two-year community college, before I graduated from high school. I received an Associate Degree in General Studies, and entered my four-year university as a junior. Today I’m going to tell you how I did that.

I want to start by explaining why I chose to do this. Let’s face it, college is super expensive. For starters, I didn’t want to graduate college $100,000 in debt. I wanted to have the chance to get through college mostly debt free, and by getting my degree I was able to do that. Another big reason was that I was simply bored in high school. My freshman year, I had managed to finish all my math and science course my school offered; keep in mind I was private schooled, so there weren’t many options in the first place. I decided I would rather load up my schedule with college courses than do nothing.

How did I do it? Well, it was relatively easy. You had to be at least a sophomore and have a 3.0 GPA. That’s it. I asked my guidance counselor to sign off on a couple documents and I was in. My first semester I only took two classes, but after that I was taking full semesters. Before I knew it, I had a degree.

This whole process taught me a lot. First and foremost, I had to learn how to balance two workloads. Being dual enrolled is a lot of work, but now my college work is a lot easier to manage. I also really had to learn to be an advocate for myself. This was probably the hardest thing to learn. As a “college in high school” student, I was not given a single advisor. Every semester I saw a different advisor to help choose my classes. Getting so many different opinions on what I should be doing taught me how to demand for what I want.

Getting my degree was not only worth it academically and financially but also socially. I learned how to better communicate and how to advocate for the things I need. I was empowered and now I know I can do anything I put my mind to.

If you ever have the chance to advance your education, your career, or anything in your life; I recommend that you 100% do it. I would not be the same student I am today if I didn’t do what I knew was best for me. You will reap the benefits and you will be forever grateful to yourself.