Four Class of 2021 Bobcats graduate high school with college degrees

This spring, four MHS Class of 2021 graduates left high school with an associate’s degree in-hand thanks to the Marshalltown CSD’s dual-credit partnership with Marshalltown Community College (MCC).

This year’s dual graduates are Diana Espinoza, Klaudia Hernandez, Madison Hunter, and Ruth Tha. These four incredible young adults will have a major edge as they explore post-high school career paths.

“I plan to transfer to the University of Northern Iowa and double-major in social work and psychology,” Espinoza said, adding her decision to pursue a college degree in high school allowed her and her family to save money.

Tha said she immediately looked into the MHS dual-credit program when she heard about it from her friends.

“It is a really good opportunity that the school gives to the students to advance their studies,” she said. “I realized that I could save so much time and money. I was able to finish this degree because of help from my friends, teachers, and counselors.”

Tha added that she plans to attend Iowa State University to continue her post-secondary education. 

Hunter also said she was interested in the dual-credit program because of the amount of time and money she would save.

“My message to younger students would be to take any advantages you’re given. You don’t have to get your degree, even though it’s a great opportunity, even taking some dual credit classes will help you in the future,” she said. “I am now going to UNI in the fall as a junior and jumping right into my major with the only cost of my Associates Degree being some summer classes. Working hard now will make your life easier in the future!”

With an associate’s degree and high school diploma in-hand, Hernandez has her sights set on a pre-med track.

“I plan on attending the University of Iowa and majoring in biochemistry,” Hernandez said of her immediate next step. “Going into high school, I already had somewhat of a plan on what I wanted my career to be. I knew it was a lot of school in the future, so I wanted to try and take some [college courses] to lessen that.”

All four of this year’s dual-graduates highly encouraged their younger peers to take the opportunity to earn college credits while in high school. Congratulations to these impressive Bobcat graduates!