19 High School Students Graduate USC Upstate’s Scholars Academy: Earn College Credits at University Level

June 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm

As area high schools celebrate graduations in the days ahead, the Scholars Academy at the University of South Carolina Upstate also celebrates the graduation of its first cohort of students from the program on May 23.

Formed as a partnership between Spartanburg County Schools and USC Upstate, the academy allows high school students to take college courses and advanced high school classes on USC Upstate’s campus during their high school years, at no cost. The students spend mornings on USC Upstate’s campus and afternoons at their high schools where they participate in other classes and extracurricular activities. Students begin the program in the 9th grade and continue through 12th grade.

The academy’s 19 graduates hail from seven area high schools. They are listed below along with the college or university they will be attending in the fall. Together the students have received $1,848,838 in scholarships.

Boiling Springs High School
Erin Burnett, Wofford College
Kara Smith, Coker College
Hilary Martin, University of South Carolina
Macy Tate, University of South Carolina
Derek Thomas Kunda, USC Upstate

Broome High School
Katherine Mierek, Clemson University
Joseph Michael Morrissey, USC Upstate

Chesnee High School
Benjamin Horton, Clemson University
Savannah Newman, USC Upstate

Dorman High School
Nicholas Napier, Wofford College
Jonaca Cooper-Rookard, Howard University
Sydney Sullivan, Appalachian State University
Saif Alimohamed, Wofford College
Jayla Hill, Clemson University

Chapman High School
Sheldon Reo Smith, USC Upstate
Kortney Schumann, Western Carolina University
Dalton Fowler, North Greenville University

Landrum High School
Madison Walter, Wofford College

James F. Byrnes High School
 Dawson Rice, Winthrop University

Melissa DeLoach, director of the Scholars Academy, has watched this first group of students progress from ninth graders to seniors and says she has been amazed by their eagerness and diligence to meet every academic challenge head-on.

“These graduating scholars have worked extremely hard over the last four years to earn college and high school credits,” says DeLoach. She recalls their first class, U.S. History with Professor Paul Grady, as where the students learned how to take notes, how to study for an essay test, how to read critically and actively, all at the college level.

“These scholars also set the bar high for future cohorts by exhibiting exemplary study habits and grades, earning up to 73 hours of college credit, mentoring and tutoring younger scholars, and serving their own communities. They exemplify the epitome of our mission in academics, leadership, and community service. These 19 graduating scholars are compassionate citizens with a passion for learning and a skill-set to lead. They are our future doctors, lawyers, engineers, writers, and teachers. Our future is in good hands!” says DeLoach.

For more information about the Scholars Academy, visit http://www.uscupstate.edu/scholars. Director Melissa DeLoach can be reached at (864) 503-5506 or mdeloach@uscupstate.edu.