This fall, Carthage High School students will have even more opportunities.

This fall, Carthage High School students will have even more opportunities.

On Thursday, the high school and Crowder College representatives celebrated an announcement with students, faculty and members of the community. Starting this fall, qualified high school students will be able to take college-level courses with the intent of graduating with not only a high school diploma, but also with an associates degree in general studies. Carthage is the first school in this area to give students this opportunity, and because of the qualifications of the Carthage staff, an associates degree in business is also possible.

"This is an exciting announcement today," said CHS principal Kandy Frazier. "We hope this will strengthen our long and healthy partnership with Crowder College, giving our students a benefit that not all students receive."

Crowder's director of administration, Jim Riggs, told the crowd gathered in the high school commons area that it took a year of dreaming to make the associates degree a reality.

"One school district stood out among all the others in southwest Missouri, and that was Carthage," he said. "The community has high expectations of the school district, and the school has high expectations of the students."

At $60 per credit hour at the high school, students who qualify for the courses will be able to get a head start on their higher education. The opportunity helps interested students financially, those students who might not have intended to go to college and other motivated students who could potentially earn higher degrees at a younger age.
"If a student is motivated they should have more opportunities," said Dr. Alan Marble, president of Crowder College. "This is a great day for us and for the students, and this is a fantastic facility here."

Additionally, Crowder College is also expanding the number of dual-credit courses at the high school and technical centers this fall. An estimated couple hundred Carthage students will participate in the higher level classes, but a more accurate estimation will be able to be made closer to enrollment time this fall.