If you ask Kathryn Gattis why she stayed the course at JCC after high school, she says the answer is simple.

“It’s financially brilliant,” the West Johnston graduate says. “I’m going to earn my entire associate degree, and I didn’t have to pay for any of it. It just made complete sense to do it.”

Gattis, 18, is one of about 50 students participating in the college’s new Stay the Course scholarship initiative that allows qualifying high school seniors to complete their associate degree tuition-free after graduation.

Current high school seniors who have successfully completed 12 credit hours of Career and College Promise (CCP) classes and maintained a minimum 2.6 GPA are eligible for the scholarship that helps them continue their educational journey at JCC.

This scholarship provides a seamless transition to college and covers the full cost of tuition and fees for 12 or more credit hours per semester. Students are eligible for up to four semesters of continuous study. Students must enroll full-time (12 or more hours) and must apply for federal financial aid. The scholarship does not cover the costs of textbooks.

Scholarship recipients will also receive specialized advising, career planning services, and university and college transfer guidance.

Gattis started taking CCP classes as a senior at West Johnston. She completed a rigorous 21 hours of college classes as a senior, but she said the experience on JCC’s campus was well worth the hard work. In addition to her academics, she quickly got involved on campus and is now treasurer of the Spanish Club, vice president of Cru, and a Keystone Leader.

Now in her second year of her associate in science degree, Gattis hopes to transfer and is considering East Carolina University, one of JCC’s new dual admission university partners.

“It was difficult and a lot of work, but I loved it,” she said of taking college classes as a high school student. “The teachers were very friendly and wanted me to do well in class which I really appreciated. I very much recommend this opportunity to anyone
who asks.”

Visit www.johnstoncc.edu/stc for more information about Stay the Course at JCC.