Five students to participate in University Commencement in July
Waterbury – June 30, 2021 – Secora Chambers, Jordan Wilson and Kayla Philpotts graduated from Highville Change Academy in New Haven earlier this month. But, they are not moving on to college in the classic sense.
They’ve already been there.
Chambers, Wilson and Philpotts earned their degrees from Post University through the University’s High School Academy, which allows students to take college courses while they attend high school. They are the second wave of Highville students to earn their degrees from Post. Last year, Gabrielle Bynum and Zaporia Satterfield earned their high school diplomas from Highville and their college degrees from Post. Since 2018, four other Highville students have earned their degrees from Post.
“It’s really exciting to have earned my degree,” Wilson said. “This experience really helped me to branch out. I made friends on campus and still had time for my high school classmates. Wilson took courses online as well as on campus. She will study nursing at Southern Connecticut State University this fall.
Chambers, Wilson and Philpotts donned Highville caps and gowns June 15, their first of two commencements this year. On July 24, they will put on their University robes and receive their Post University diplomas. Bynum and Satterfield, 2020 Highville graduates, will also participate in Post University Commencement, which was postponed last year due to the pandemic.
For Satterfield, “The opportunity to earn my college degree while still in high school was mind-blowing. My teachers were encouraging and in support,” said Satterfield.
They donned Highville caps and gowns June 15, their first of two commencements this year. On July 24, they will put on their University robes and receive their Post University diplomas. Bynum and Zaporia will also participate in Post University Commencement on July 24, which was postponed last year.
“Our students are heading off to four-year colleges with two years of coursework to complete. I am so proud of each one of them. Each student was supported with this program at Post. I appreciate how the Post University faculty and program representatives work closely with the students and me right to graduation,” said Walter Signora, coordinator for school counseling & college services at Highville Change Academy. “More high schools need to utilize this collaborative program to up their game,” Signora noted.
An affordable option
Chad McGuire, associate director of corporate partnerships who oversees the High School Academy at Post University, said the program launched over five years ago. The early schools to participate in the Academy were Sacred Heart in Waterbury and Highville. Today, there are 15 high schools participating in High School Academy, including the Early College High School in Waterbury and Thomaston High School where students are earning their Certificate in Paralegal Studies. This coming fall, High School Academy expects to have over 200 students enrolled in college and high school courses at the same time.
Graduates accumulated 60 credits and earned an associate degree in management. McGuire said, “We will always welcome our High School Academy students to continue their education with us at Post, if however, their academic journey takes them elsewhere, their degrees are highly transferable to other four year colleges.” One graduate from the Academy’s 2020 graduating class, Gabrielle Bynum earned her bachelor’s degree in legal studies. Today, she attends Quinnipiac University in Hamden where she is pursuing her MBA.
In talking about Post’s High School Academy, Bynum said, “What inspired me to take high school and college classes at the same time was the fact that I could get my bachelor’s degree much sooner and gain some college experience early.”
“Our goal is to make education equitable, obtainable, and affordable. Post University and the High School Academy is achieving that,” McGuire said.
Gabrielle Bynum: Bachelor’s Degree legal students. Now attend Quinnipiac University
Zaporia Satterfield – Associates Degree in Management. Now attend Albertus Magnus
Secora Chambers: Associates Degree, Management. In the fall will attend University of New Haven
Kayla Philpotts: Associate’s Degree, Management. In the fall will attend Iona College, New York in the
Jordan Wilson; Associate’s Degree, Management. Will attend Southern Connecticut State University