Students opt to graduate high school early


After finishing her last semester final, senior Emma Fickel anxiously waited for the bell to ring. While the majority of her classmates were only halfway through the school year, Fickel was ready to be done.

“I am super excited about graduating early. I was done on the last day of first semester [Jan 29th] but I started college classes on January 9th,” Fickel said. “Since I started, I also signed to their track and field program, and practices start next week.”

Counselor Kelly Messing-Mirabito explains how some students are able to graduate early.

“If they meet all the requirements before June of their senior year, they could be eligible to graduate early,” Mrs. Messing-Mirabito said. “Some students take summer school to earn the extra credits needed, some may have taken high school credits in middle school and some earn extra credits through marching band.”

Junior Upamanyu Sharma is opting to graduate an entire year early.

“I am graduating early because I’ve not only completed my high school requirements, but I have nearly exhausted classes I could take at Oakland University,” Sharma said. “I’ve taken some math classes, including three graduate classes and two research level classes.”

Senior Sudarshna Radhakrishnan probably could have graduated early, but opted not to because she does not feel ready to end her high school experience.

“I did not choose to graduate early because I wanted to be with my friends and have a good high school career,” Radhakrishnan said. “Also, I’ve heard many stories about people who think they are ready to do well in college and they graduate early and they struggle because they haven’t matured enough and they haven’t learned enough, so I don’t want to hurt my college career as well.”

Mrs. Messing-Mirabito sees very few students choose to graduate early, typically only one to two per year; she explains why these students choose to take the unconventional route.

“Students graduate early for many reasons such as moving, wanting to work and save money for college, wanting to start classes at college earlier, family situation,” Mrs. Messing-Mirabito said. “Depending on the student, their situation and their goals, it can be an option that works for them.”

Fickle chose to graduate early because she felt ready to advance further toward her future.

“Pros are definitely getting another hour of sleep, even though I still have to get up at 8 a.m. for practices,” Fickle said. “I also get to start on my college experience early and make new friends and new experiences.”

Radhakrishnan can see why some students choose to graduate early, and definitely considered all the positives before choosing to stay the whole school year.

“There are positives to graduating early such as you have more time, so if you’re in college and you decide you want to switch majors it’s not like you have only foud years you have an extra year so you can afford to take longer,” Radhakrishnan said. “I know some people don’t graduate college in four years they work part time and stuff like that but just like having that one year, it gives you a head start so you have more opportunities. You get to graduate college early as well, so you keep advancing, and improving yourself.”

Though Fickle feels satisfied with her decision to graduate early, she acknowledges there are some negatives to graduating early.

“Some cons are that I don’t see my friends as often, but I see them once they’re out of school,” Fickle said. “Another con is that I don’t get to do spirit days, but I do get to to SANP, Prom, Commencement and other senior things without having to be in school.”

Sherma is looking forward to his decision to leave high school as a junior.

“I’m excited about going to college and moving forward. Especially today with the abundance of technology, graduating a year before my peers doesn’t really present a problem because I can always get in touch with friends.”