Historic Senior Class at College & Career High School Graduating

April 26, 2016 -- The College & Career High School, a partnership between Albuquerque Public Schools and Central New Mexico Community College, will be graduating an historic senior class on Saturday.
April 26, 2016

CCHS, which allows students to complete their high school diploma while earning college credits toward a certificate, associate degree or bachelor’s degree, opened to high school sophomores, juniors and seniors in August 2013.

The sophomores from that first academic year of 2013-14 will be the first class to complete three years at the innovative school and they’ll be participating in CNM’s Graduation Ceremony Saturday. In all, 52 CCHS seniors will be graduating with 2,000 college credit hours, an average of 38.5 college credit hours. Eleven students will be graduating with a CNM certificate or a CNM associate degree.

In each of the school’s first two years in existence, it has earned an “A” grade from the New Mexico Public Education Department.

"CCHS has not only prepared us for college, but for life," said CCHS senior Diana Perales. "Without CCHS, I would never have found my passion for chemistry, let alone received my Associate Degree in chemistry at the same time as high school graduation."

The CCHS students typically spend half of their day taking APS classes, and the other half taking CNM classes. Tuition is free for CCHS students, and so are CNM textbooks, allowing the students and their families to save time and thousands of dollars on a college education.

"In my freshman year (of high school), I did not find school important," said CCHS senior Oscar Machado. "I never tried to set a future for myself. I started attending CCHS and it changed that for me. Once I took my first college class, it made me realize that education can send me towards a really positive direction."

Many CNM classes are transferrable to state universities. And some CCHS students have graduated from the high school with enough college credits to enter a university as a junior.

CCHS is located on CNM’s Main Campus and CCHS students have access to the same student support systems as all of CNM’s students, such as free tutoring, libraries, academic advising and achievement coaches.

There are 139 students (sophomores, juniors, seniors) enrolled at CCHS. CNM and APS plan to continue expanding the school in the years ahead.