SEBRING — All nine seniors who were pursuing an International Baccalaureate Diploma at Sebring High School learned recently that they all earned a diploma for the rigorous curriculum.
The IB diploma graduates from Sebring High’s third IB graduating class are: Tariq Ausaf II, Christina Henry, Jared Lang, Jacob Livingston, Kelby Mahoney, Nisha Patel, Amanda Rios, Sarah Rogers and Scout Royce.
Speaking by phone Thursday from Florida State University, Mahoney said she is taking summer classes and will be majoring in information technology and communications.
She noted a number of benefits as an IB student and IB graduate.
“It gave me an availability to have network connections, so I currently already have a job at Florida State University and this is partly because I was in the IB program,” Mahoney said.
She is working in the office of the university’s associate dean of finance, who is also a dean of Information and Communications Technology.
With her IB credit, Mahoney was able to skip a year of college classes.
“At Florida State you have to complete a set of liberal arts courses, which was satisfied with my IB scores,” she said.
Some of her friends who were not in IB seem to be struggling with the two classes they are taking during the summer, Mahoney said. “I have actually completed all of my course work for one of my classes.”
The Sebring High IB program offered a rigourous course load, but it was “manageable if you had the determination to do it,” Mahoney noted. “I probably wasn’t one of the smartest kids in my classes, but I was definitely one of the hardest working.”
Rogers believes the IB program prepared her for college and also helped with college admissions.
Most of the universities she visited said they preferred IB students, “so right off the bat I knew I had a little bit of an advantage when applying,” she said. “From what I hear from other past IB students, they felt like college was sometimes a little bit easier than the IB program.”
She will be attending Wake Forest University in North Carolina where she will major in business, minor in Spanish and have a concentration on community development.
With good scores on placement tests at the university, Rogers said she won’t have to take most of the freshman classes.
Sebring High also had four seniors who took IB classes who were certificate candidates and were not going for the full diploma. Those IB certficate students are: Holly Hendry, Alina San Miguel, Andrew Estima and Jael Rivera.
Sebring High IB Coordinator JoAnna Cochlin said the program’s numbers are very strong, with the 100 percent IB diploma graduation rate and a high pass rate in each IB subject compared to the worldwide pass rates.
The pass rates show a great level of accomplishment for the district’s IB students and compared to the world, “our kids did phenomenally well,” she said.
For the 2014-15 school year, the district’s IB program is scheduled to have a total of 173 students: 69 freshman, 46 sophomores, 34 juniors (28 diploma candidates and 6 certificate candidates) and 24 seniors (21 diploma candidates and three certificate candidates).