DHS Seniors Make Collegiate Academy History

D'Iberville High Seniors Receive College Degree Before Diploma

Five D’Iberville High seniors made history this year by becoming the first students in the Harrison County School District to receive their college degree, before getting their high school diploma! The five seniors were enrolled in the Collegiate Academy program, which HCSD launched during the 2017-18 school year.  

Collegiate Academy Class of 2019

The students graduated with an associate degree from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College on May 9, 2019.   Then, on May 25, 2019, those same students walked across the stage to receive their high school diploma during D’Iberville High’s graduation ceremony.

"May 25, 2019, is a date to remember.  Harrison County School District presented high school diplomas to the first students that walked across the stage with their associate degree from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. These five students from D'Iberville High School have left us with a sense of pride and admiration.  It is a remarkable accomplishment that the students completed!" said Harrison County Schools Superintendent, Roy Gill.

These following graduates began their journey as juniors:  Rhyann Casey, Hannah Dobson, Dreayana Hawkins, Tyler Krivanec and Samantha Stevens.

"It was just a huge milestone that I just completed, and it was a goal that I didn't think I could actually set for myself. But, I did it and I felt good.  It was really heartwarming to walk across the stage and receive that handshake. It was really life changing," said Collegiate Academy graduate Dreayana Hawkins.

Collegiate Academy allows high school students to simultaneously earn a high school diploma and an associate degree. The student body consists of high school juniors and seniors enrolled in dual-credit courses at their high school and the Jefferson Davis Campus of MGCCC.  The students split their time between the high school campus and the JD campus, and they get to participate in both high school and college activities.

"It is a fun experience, but it's also challenging. You have to be on top and be willing to make sacrifices to get what you want in the future," said Dreayana. "I saw the honor, the pride, and joy in my family's eyes. My family's also happy for me that they'll not only do one, but two graduations at the same time. It's a lot, but I'm handling it well."

Dreayana Hawkins and Hannah Dobson were featured in this WXXV News story about Collegiate Academy:

Click here to learn more about the year HCSD launched Collegiate Academy: https://msachieves.mdek12.org/harrison-county-school-district-launches-collegiate-academy/

This link from MGCCC contains additional information about Collegiate Academy: https://mgccc.edu/2019/04/37-prepare-to-graduate-from-both-high-school-and-mgcccs-collegiate-academy-in-may/

This WLOX story mentions the 2019 Collegiate Academy graduates: https://www.wlox.com/2019/05/09/mgccc-graduation-ceremonies-feature-almost-students/

In this video, Dreayana Hawkins talks about being in the inaugural Collegiate Academy class, her experience in the program, and why other students across the Harrison County School District should consider this option.