NEWARK, Ohio, May 5, 2016 – Michael Russell is 19 years old. Most young people his age are just starting their college career, but Russell is finishing his first degree. Russell is graduating from Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) this Friday with an Associate of Applied Business in Accounting Technology.
"I started at COTC when I was a junior at Johnstown-Monroe High School in 2013 as part of the high school options program," said Russell. "After I graduated from high school, I only needed a few more classes to get my associate degree in accounting. I took four classes during autumn semester and two classes this spring."
Russell isn't done with college yet though. He is going to pursue his bachelor's degree in fraud and forensics accounting at Franklin University. He should graduate in December 2017. COTC has an articulation agreement with Franklin University in which all COTC coursework transfers allowing students to easily go on to complete a bachelor's degree.
"I hope to eventually get a job at an accounting firm," said Russell. "I think it's great that I am able to start my career so young."
Russell credits his success to the instructors he had at COTC. He said Accounting Instructor Amy Stahl became a mentor to him. "I still go to her with questions," said Russell. "The instructors are very approachable and open to the students. I love the small campus environment at COTC."
Russell is participating in the COTC graduation ceremony on Friday evening, and his family will be there to cheer him on. "My family is very proud of me. They know I worked very hard to earn this degree," said Russell. "It's really exciting to get a college degree this soon after high school. I highly encourage current high school students to get involved with the College Credit Plus program and take advantage of the opportunity to do this."
COTC's graduation ceremony is tomorrow (Friday, May 6). It begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Adena Hall gymnasium on the Newark campus. There are 225 people graduating.
Central Ohio Technical College is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs, as well as encouraging the professional development of students, staff, faculty and administrators to assist them in achieving their maximum potential. COTC is the only technical college in Ohio operating four full-service campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.