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Haverhill High School Seniors Graduate with College Credits, Thanks to Early College Program

Submitted by on June 18, 2020 – 9:21 pm
HHS grad and EArly College student Nicole Affanato on a stage.

Nicole Affanato

When 2020 Haverhill High School (HHS) graduates Alejandro Molina-Morales and Jennifer Sanchez enroll in college this fall, they will each take with them 46 college credits they earned through Northern Essex Community College’s Early College Program which allows high school students to attend college classes as early as their sophomore year in high school.

Molina-Morales, who had a 3.89 GPA, and Sanchez, who earned a 3.69 GPA, were two of 31 students who earned a total of 667 college credits through Early College.

The HHS Early College participants were honored during the HHS graduation celebration. Each received an Early College participation certificate and cord. Northern Essex President Lane Glenn also sent a personal video message.

“If this were a normal year we would be together in the same room, you and I, surrounded by family and friends, teachers from your high school, staff here at the college, celebrating this Early College graduation tonight, but this is not a normal year and you are not a normal class and we are thankful for that,” Glenn said. “You’re strong, you’re smart, you’re resilient. You have managed to accumulate all these college credits while graduating from high school during a pandemic…we celebrate you here today…wherever you go, I am cheering you on.”

While at least eight of the HHS Early College students will continue their college education at Northern Essex, the others will attend Emmanuel College, University of Rhode Island, University of New England, Merrimack College, Coastal Carolina University, Wheaton College, Endicott College, and at least one is enlisting in the United States Marine Corps.

Nicole Affanato, who earned 16 credits and a 3.92 GPA, will continue her studies at Northern Essex. She was awarded the First Knight Presidential Scholarship.”The best part about Early College for me, was the convenience of being able to earn college credits while still in high school…Early College has prepared me by being able to slowly transition from high school to college. Taking college level classes and on a real college campus has made me more comfortable with the lifestyle of being a full- time college student… To any student debating whether to participate in Early College I would urge you to do it,” Affanato said.

Northern Essex currently has Early College Programs with Lawrence, Haverhill, Whittier and Amesbury high schools. Last fall, there were 300 high school students receiving college credit from Northern Essex by enrolling in Early College Programs or other high school partnerships. To learn more, visit the website or contact NECC at 978 659-1235 or