South Carolina Connections Academy Class of 2014 Graduates Earn More Than Half a Million Dollars in Scholarship Awards

Statewide virtual school celebrates graduates’ accomplishments during in-person commencement ceremony.

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Jay W. Ragley, senior director of state relations for Connections Education, delivers the commencement address

Jay W. Ragley, senior director of state relations for Connections Education, delivers the commencement address during the South Carolina Connections Academy graduation ceremony.

As alumni, your charge is to harness this pioneering spirit, along with the knowledge, skills and life lessons you've mastered at South Carolina Connections Academy, to better yourselves and your community

Columbia, SC (PRWEB) June 16, 2014

Collectively earning nearly $650,000 in scholarship awards during the 2013–14 school year, South Carolina Connections Academy’s Class of 2014 graduates have a bright future ahead of them following their graduation from high school this week. South Carolina Connections Academy, a tuition-free virtual public school serving students statewide in grades K-12, recognized 210 students from across the state during its commencement ceremony in Columbia, S.C., on Wednesday, June 11.

More than 120 students along with their family members, friends, teachers and school representatives gathered at the school’s in-person commencement ceremony at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center to celebrate the graduates’ successes. Jay W. Ragley, senior director of state relations for Connections Education, delivered the commencement address on behalf of the school’s administration.

For the majority of graduating students, South Carolina Connections Academy is only the first step on a path to future success. Of the 210 graduates, nearly 70 percent intend to continue their education and attend a two- or four- year college or university. Graduating students have plans to attend top colleges and universities including the University of South Carolina, Penn State University, Wellesley College, Clemson University and Embry-Riddle University, among others.

“You are pioneers in education who made conscious choices to study and learn in an environment without the constraints of time and place,” said Ragley, during his commencement speech. “As alumni, your charge is to harness this pioneering spirit, along with the knowledge, skills and life lessons you've mastered at South Carolina Connections Academy, to better yourselves and your community.”

In addition to acceptances to prestigious higher education institutions, South Carolina Connections Academy graduates have received nearly $650,000 collectively through academic or athletic scholarships. Erin Harris, who will be attending Winthrop University, received more than $143,000 in scholarship funds to pursue her academic goals. Other students have received scholarships to attend various universities and participate in sports such as tennis and swimming.

“Our 2014 graduates have become an inspiration to all of us through their successes in academics, athletics and other aspects of their lives,” said Amanda Ebel, executive director at South Carolina Connections Academy. “We are incredibly proud of their accomplishments and have no doubts that they will continue to succeed in their future endeavors.”

South Carolina Connections Academy, which is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI), provides high-quality, personalized online education. South Carolina-certified teachers work with students and Learning Coaches to develop customized learning programs that address each student’s personal education needs while maintaining a curriculum that meets rigorous state education standards.

The commencement ceremony is just one example of the many social events that South Carolina Connections Academy hosts throughout the year for students to interact with peers. The school frequently organizes field trips across the state and encourages peer-to-peer interaction and teamwork through various clubs and activities, including chess, robotics, poetry, art and environmental clubs.

Enrollment for the 2014–15 school year is underway and information sessions and events for interested families are taking place across the state. For more information on South Carolina Connections Academy, visit http://www.SouthCarolinaConnectionsAcademy.com.

About South Carolina Connections Academy
South Carolina Connections Academy is a tuition-free, high-quality, highly accountable virtual public school serving students in grades K-12 statewide. South Carolina Connections Academy is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI), an accrediting division of AdvancED. The school opened in 2008 and is authorized under state law by the South Carolina Public Charter School District. The combination of state-certified teachers, a proven curriculum, unique electives such as the Juilliard eLearning program, technology tools and community experiences creates a supportive and successful online learning opportunity for families and children who want an individualized approach to education. For more information, call 800-382-6010 or visit http://www.SouthCarolinaConnectionsAcademy.com.