Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Dual enrollment helps Tri County alumna get a jump on college


As a high school student, Haley Powers got ahead on college while at the same time learning how to be a college student.

A 2022 graduate of Tri-County High School, Powers took dual-enrollment courses with Montcalm Community College (MCC) beginning her sophomore year of high school. She said the adjustment to the different rigor of college was her main challenge, but the experience prepared her for her higher education journey.

“The whole MCC experience gave me insight as to what college would be like without being thrown in all at once,” said 19-year-old Powers, who added that her favorite experience was being able to form relationships with her instructors and being able to refer back to them for advice and recommendation letters.

“Every class that I took through MCC was always an extremely positive experience; I worked well with my peers and the professors were always welcoming,” she said.

Dual enrollment allows students to enroll in up to 10 college classes throughout their high school career. Successful completion of a college course grants students college credit as well as satisfies one of their high school graduation requirements, either a core requirement or an elective requirement, depending on the college course taken. 

By the time Powers graduated from high school, she had earned 29 college credits, so when she was accepted to Grand Valley State University (GVSU), where she is currently a student, Powers was automatically placed at sophomore standing.

Currently in her second year at GVSU, Powers is majoring in cell and molecular biology with minors in chemistry and criminal justice. She is also a student at the Honors College. Powers expects to graduate in Spring 2026.

“After graduation, I am looking to work at a forensic crime lab as a forensic scientist,” said Powers, who is currently completing an internship with the Michigan State Police Forensics Crime Lab in Grand Rapids.

Powers also keeps busy working in a drop-in chemistry tutoring center and the Chemistry Success Center. She also participates on the Honors Student Council, serving specifically on the Overnights Committee where she helps plan events for incoming freshmen to assist them in their adjustment to college life.

Would Powers do things any differently? No. She believes that her dual-enrollment courses placed her on the right path after high school.

“If I had to redo my high school career over again, I would still choose to do dual-enrollment through MCC!” she said.


Media contact:
Shelly Springborn
Director of Communications and Public Relations