Kelsey Buchanan

Collegiate High School valedictorian earned a degree before a high school diploma

Kelsey Buchanan came to College of the Mainland Collegiate High School looking for “a chance to get ahead” – and found it.

As valedictorian of the 2013 graduating class, Buchanan will not only graduate with an associate degree before receiving diplomas from Dickinson High School but also graduate with thousands in scholarships to universities. She and seven others from Collegiate High School http://www.com.edu/collegiate-high-school/  are in the Top 20 at Dickinson High School, and the new graduate feels confident as she approaches the next step in her education.

“I know what to expect and who to talk to in college,” said Buchanan. “I couldn’t have asked for a better transition. I think it was one of the best decisions I’ve made.”

The school opened up a world of academic options for the science lover. She enjoyed biology though she’d “always thought of cats as pets, not something you dissect;” however, she found her niche in a COM anatomy and physiology class. Inspired to pursue a career in anesthesiology, she’s transferring to Baylor to study premed with $58,00 in scholarships.

“Kelsey had personal goals and accomplished those goals by attending Collegiate High School. She was a very successful college student, and I expect her to be equally successful at the university level and in her chosen career,” said Collegiate High School Principal Sandi Belcher.

With a COM advisor and professors to help each step of the way, Buchanan found support in earning an associate degree while remaining involved at her high school, where she played on the varsity volleyball team.

“(Professors) challenged you but were willing to give extra help if you ever needed it,” she said. “Collegiate High School helps you realize that a relationship with professors will really go a long way if you need help.”