La Porte High School student prepares to graduate with college degree before high school diploma

Mayra Moreno Image
Wednesday, January 16, 2019
High schooler earns college degree before his diploma
A program at La Porte High School is helping students like Gavin Turnage earn a college degree before they graduate high school.

LA PORTE, Texas (KTRK) -- At just 17 years old, Gavin Turnage has accomplished more than most of his peers.

"I'm super proud of him," said his mother, Charla Buras. "He amazes me every day."

Not only will he graduate from La Porte High School this May, but he will also leave with an associate's degree in science from San Jacinto Junior College.

It's all thanks to a program called ACE that he started the summer before his junior year.

"Right now I'm in Physics 2, Calculus 3, and Composite 2, Texas Government," said Turnage.

Aside from going to high school and college, he also works delivering pizza on the weekends. Turnage said it's all about managing time and visualizing the end result.

"I want to be a biomedical engineer," Turnage said. "(I want to) design prosthetics. That's what I want to do."

His biggest motivator is his mom, who had him when she was just 18.

"We started flashcards when he was a baby in the bathtub," Buras recalls.

As he grew older, Buras said she noticed just how smart and focused he was, and knew he was destined for greatness.

"He's got a bright future," said Buras. "He definitely does. I couldn't be more proud. I'm ready for bigger, better things."

For now Turnage is hitting the books. He's already been accepted to the University of Houston, but he's also hoping to get a letter from Texas A&M University.

"Honestly, I just can't wait to finally go pursue a higher education and get a career in engineering," Turnage said.

To learn more about San Jacinto College's dual credit programs, visit their website.

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