Class of 2019: Collegiate Academy

This year, we will be following some of the members of the class of 2019 from GHS, CHHS, and Collegiate Academy. Today we’ll talk to 3 members of the Collegiate Academy freshman class. The Collegiate Academy is beginning its second year as GCISD’s early college high school, through a partnership with Tarrant County College. All students who graduate from the Collegiate Academy will earn both a high school degree and an Associates Degree.


  1. What does being a Freshman mean to you, educationally and socially?


mario Mario Pedraza: Educationally it means that it’s a transition to a bigger school, and getting ready to learn new things. Socially it means that we are the little fish in the aquarium. Even the people that you don’t know, you’re all feeling the same way and experiencing the new things together. Being at Collegiate Academy, we have a smaller group of freshman, which is nice because it’s not crowded and it’s easier to get to know everyone.


Taylor Taylor Adkins: I think it’s a new start to meet new people. You are also learning new ways of doing your work, studying, and taking tests. I think it’s also providing you with a chance to try and learn new things. This is the first time in our school life that we’ve gotten a chance to choose the things we want to learn more about, and that’s nice. I think we get more of a chance to stand out here. I was going to be in a high school with 2,000 students, and now there’s only 200.


QuentinQuentin Holmes: I feel like being a freshman is a chance to start over. You’re going from being the top of the school, back to the bottom. You also are given a lot more responsibility. If you compare this to a regular high school, we get to take college classes, and we’ll graduate ahead of a normal high school student, so we get more opportunities that way.


2.             When you graduate high school, what do you hope you’ve accomplished?


mario Mario: When I graduate I want to be able to say that I was a great student, and that coming to Collegiate Academy was the right choice for me. I want to be able to say that my teachers cared about me and prepared me for college.  I want to say that I was a part of the legacy we’re creating at CA.


Taylor: When I graduate from high school, I want to have earned enough scholarships to pay for my entire college tuition.


Quentin: I want to just be proud of everything I’ve accomplished in high school, and enjoy finishing the first 18 years of my life.



3.             What role does technology play in your day-to-day life? How do you use it in school?


m Mario: Technology plays a huge role in my life. I’m not going to the same high school that most of my friends went to, so I’m able to stay in contact every day with them using texting and Instagram. At school, we’ve been getting more and more technology every year. This year we have our own Chromebooks, and we turn in work online and talk to teachers online. I think it’s a really good change to use more technology in schools. I’m going to have to learn how to rely on technology in school and the real world. I just don’t want it to turn into everything being technology-based. I always want to have a teacher and other students in the room, so you can have the personal attention. 


t Taylor: A lot of teenagers are dependent on social media, but I’m not really into it. I have a few accounts, but I only use them for school-related things. I like using technology for more entertainment-based things, like Netflix and YouTube. In the classroom I think it can be a distraction, because sometimes if a teacher mentions something I want to know more about, I just start Googling it, instead of paying attention to the notes. Sometimes I wish we could just have paper and pencils, especially in reading.

Q Quentin: I’m not super dependent on technology either. I don’t need it, but I really like it for entertainment. I stopped using all the social networks last year, and my grades went to all A’s. In the classroom it’s nice because if you forget a textbook or your notebook, you can look things up online, or take your notes in a word document. It can be distracting at times, but you’ve got to learn how to focus to get your work done. Here, since it’s a college environment, I think the teachers trust us to use technology in a good way.


4.             What do you want to do after you graduate High School?



Mario: I want to go to MIT, A&M or Stanford, and get my masters in mechanical or civil engineering. Being a civil engineer is like architecture, so I really want to construct something that is something special and that will help people.
Taylor: I’d like to my graduate degree in a science field. Right now I’m thinking about biomedical engineering. I want to go to either UNT, A&M or S&T  (Science and Technology) Missouri.


Quentin: I want to be a marine biologist; I think water animals are really fascinating. I want to learn more about how they function and live their lives. I either want to go to TCU, Duke or the University of Miami.
Thank you to Mario, Taylor and Quentin for talking to us. We will visit with them again in May to see how their freshman year went!