The Lone Oak High School senior will graduate with her associates degree from her work at the Commonwealth Middle College. Collins is one local high schooler to complete work with the high-school and college credit program at West Kentucky Community & Technical College. She applied as a sophomore, started as a junior and received 36 free hours of credit. She continued with additional classes, and will walk away with two diplomas in May.
Kelsey Collins, daughter of Jeff and Vanessa Collins, is the Mid-Continent University Teen of the Week. Each Monday, the Sun features a different MCU Teen of the Week selected from nominees who high school guidance counselors throughout western Kentucky and southern Illinois submit to the Sun. Mid-Continent University will provide each Teen of the Week with a $2,500 annual scholarship to its university, which is renewable for four years. In the spring, a Teen of the Year will be chosen from the weekly winners and will receive a full four-year scholarship to Mid-Continent University, currently valued at up to $55,000, or a cash reward of $2,500 paid through the Paducah Sun if the student selects another college to attend.
Not only will Collins leave with an associates degree, she also has complete her certified nurse's assistant training. She wanted to get as much school early, and the offer for free college hours was too good to pass up, she said. Collins was motivated to choose neurology after a two-week stay at Brown University for a summer program. The competitive, international program was her first trip on a plane, and it gave her a great sense of worth. Meeting people from all over the world also gave her the itch to travel. She plans on studying abroad in college.
Medicine has always been a passion, but music is not far behind. Collins has played guitar since she was eight, and she co-founded the a cappella singing group, The Crescendos, at Lone Oak High School. The group has performed for the board of education and other local audiences.
Collins will complete her undergraduate degree at University of Louisville. She wants to be active in a youth group, as religion has been one of the most important things in her life. Collins wants to keep a level head through medical school. It will be very challenging, but she can always rely on her parents for motivation and support.
Call Rebecca Feldhaus, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8651.