a student in the hallway
Sarabeth Boyd is a dual-enrolled Northside High School student. President of the student body, president of Beta Club, and homecoming queen, she came to BCCC to achieve her goal of also becoming valedictorian of her graduating class.

Career & College Promise is the best of both worlds: Sarabeth Boyd

At some point, a student can achieve everything that high school has to offer. When they hit that wall, there is only one place to go: college. For Sarabeth Boyd–already Northside High School’s student body president, Future Business Leaders of America president, homecoming queen, Beta Club president, member of the cross-country team, among other roles–earning her Associate in Arts before graduating high school was one more way that she could stand out of the crowd. The Pinetown resident plans to leave the farm behind, but take farmhouse style with her, as she starts at Meredith College in the fall of 2020 double majoring in both interior design and business administration.

In order for Boyd to achieve one of the few titles she had yet to earn–valedictorian–she decided she needed to dual-enroll at Beaufort County Community College. Through a free program called Career and College Promise, high school juniors and seniors can enroll at the college. While some students will get a few classes out of the way, an increasing number, including Boyd, are graduating high school with an associate degree in hand. This is six years of education completed in four; not an easy task.

Inspired by HGTV’s Fixer Upper, she plans to bring the simple and rustic farmhouse style to the big city. “I like seeing that people can transform really old and worn out spaces into completely new spaces,” she says, “and you can incorporate your own personality into everything. It’s a way to show people who they are by looking at a space.”

With a weighted grade point average of 4.56, she is well on her way to her goal of becoming valedictorian. During her first semester at the college she had to juggle one high school class with seven college classes. While her advisor warned her about taking 17 credit hours at once, she pushed ahead. All CCP students have a high school liaison as an advisor, but they are expected to be responsible for their studies, learning how to juggle class assignments, work schedules.

She had several classes through broadcast where students watch a college class live. In these classes they are able to ask questions just like students who attend the classes in person. For her online classes, she would go to the library to work. The high school students often work on their classes together, taking turns as the designated student to email the professor with questions. Once she started attending classes on campus, she met other high school students from the region, as well as college students.

Before her classes, Boyd goes to her job at Fitness Unlimited at 5:30 a.m. On top of this heavy class load, she also runs on the track team and the cross-country team at Northside. The college has opened her up to even more extra-curricular activities, including being an ambassador and joining Gamma Beta Phi, BCCC’s honor society.

“With dual enrollment, you get the best of both worlds,” she says. “You can still do all the sports and have the whole high school experience, as they say, and you can also take classes to get ahead.” Prom, Spirit Week, football games; these were all aspects of high school life that would have been different if she had not stayed at the high school.

While she anticipates saving time and money by getting her associate’s degree, it may still take her four years to complete her two bachelor’s degrees. CCP has helped save her money through another aspect. With her higher grades, she can now tap into more scholarships. She has already received $23,000 in merit-based scholarships. She plans to apply for others that could result in a full-ride.

Her time at the college will mean that she will perform better at her next college, save time and money, and help her compete for even more scholarships. Having hit a wall with her possibilities at Northside High School, Boyd has torn it down and created her own open-concept education, one that reflects her own personality and brings together the best elements of high school and college.