Oceanside CA— On May 21, 2015, MiraCosta College will hold its annual Adult High School Program graduation, set to start at 6 p.m. in the Concert Hall at the Oceanside Campus, 1 Barnard Drive. Admission is free and parking permits are not required.
MiraCosta College’s Adult High School (AHS) graduates come from different walks of life and each has taken a unique path toward graduation.
It’s rare for a student to earn both a high school diploma and an associate degree at the same time, but Vista resident Ian Rigby did just that.
Rigby, 21, was homeschooled from preschool and had never stepped onto a school campus until the first day of fall classes in 2011.
“I was homeschooled all throughout my life and felt I had no academic skills,” said Rigby.
Though he has taken classes at home, Rigby did not have the credit to earn a high school diploma, so he enrolled at MiraCosta College’s AHS program. Rigby completed the program by concurrently enrolling in credit classes, which covered both general education classes for his majors (psychology and linguistics), as well as the AHS program classes.
“I really love MiraCosta College. Everything from the professors, the programs and staff,” said Rigby. “The college really lived up to what I thought college life would be and has really prepared me to transfer to a university.”
Rigby will transfer to UCLA this fall 2015 and hopes to be a professor and researcher in the field of neurolinguistics.
Anastasia Botnikova couldn’t even count to twenty in English when she arrived in the United States seven years ago from Russia. But all that has changed. On May 21, Botnikova will don a cap and gown and walk across the stage as a graduate of the MiraCosta Adult High School Program.
“I had a hard time with school back in Russia,” said Botnikova, 24. “I had to repeat eighth grade three times before passing.”
Before Botnikova could finish high school, she moved to Oceanside with her mom to start a new life. Botnikova enrolled in a local high school and quickly realized her language skills were not up to par with other students. The language barrier made it hard for her to make friends and communicate with faculty and staff, which ultimately caused her to withdraw from school.
“I felt very lonely and it was hard to get my point across because I could barely speak English,” said Botnikova. “I ended up withdrawing high school and instead enrolled in MiraCosta College’s ESL classes.”
Botnikova said enrolling at MiraCosta College was one of the best decisions she ever made.
In December 2014, Botnikova finished Community Learning Center’s Adult High School Program (AHS) and will begin attending credit classes at the college’s Oceanside Campus in summer 2015. She hopes to one day earn a bachelor’s degree.
“The MiraCosta College Adult High School Graduation is an important achievement for our students and many of them have overcome significant barriers just to come to school, “ said Nikki Schaper, interim dean of the Community Learning Center. “I believe that the true test of one’s character is what they do when things are tough. Our graduates are shining reflections of resilience, dedication and tenacity.”
MiraCosta College’s Adult High School Program offers fall, spring and summer sessions. Most day classes meet four times per week. All evening classes meet twice weekly. MiraCosta offers the only college-based, high school diploma program in Coastal North County, and tuition is free.
For more information on how to enroll in the Adult High School Program, call the MiraCosta College Community Learning Center at 760.795.8710 or visit miracosta.edu/ahsdp.