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Forty-two Floyd County high school students are participating in the Floyd County Early College Academy and the Floyd County Information Technology (IT) Early College Academy this year.

Floyd County Schools Superintendent Dr. Henry Webb is never short of ideas.

When he approached then-Big Sandy Community and Technical College President Dr. George D. Edwards about the notion of starting an Early College Academy, both agreed it was worth a try.

Since then, BSCTC and the Floyd County Schools have not skipped a beat.

This year, 42 Floyd County high school juniors and seniors are full-time students on BSCTCs Prestonsburg campus and will have the opportunity to graduate high school with an associate degree.

This was a chance to create new and exciting opportunities for our students, said Dr. Webb. Im very thankful that our board of education and district have embraced this concept and it continues to grow.

Since its inception in 2012, 28 students have graduated high school with an associate degree. Those students have accumulated more than $2.5 million in scholarships.

I want to commend Dr. [Henry] Webb and the Floyd County School District and our institution for its vision in turning this dream into a reality, said Dr. Devin Stephenson, president of BSCTC. This Early College Academy is one of the nations finest and we have established a set of best practices for rural areas across the nation to follow.

Floyd County Schools held a Welcome Back celebration on Tuesday, August 19 in the Student Center on BSCTCs Prestonsburg campus. Dr. Webb was quick to point out those who work on the frontlines everyday with the Early College Academy. Those included: April Steele, gifted and talented coordinator; Sandy Mullins guidance counselor; and Sandra Tackett, gifted and talented instructor. He also recognized Dale Pack, director of district-wide services, and Courtney DeRossett, technology/innovation coordinator.

He also recognized the start of the Floyd County Information Technology (IT) Early College Academy.

The following students are in this years Floyd County Early College Academy: Zachary Akers, Chelsea Austin, Brianna Branham, Carly Burchett, Zachary Caldwell, Nicholas Caudill, Kayla Cobern, Dakota Collins, John Cooksey, Byron Cox, Hannah Depoy, Emily Dillon, Jazmyn Elswick, Jared Tate Greene, Cameron Goble, Josh Grindrod, Sydney Hackworth, Ryan Hall, Rachel Hampton, Mariana Jacobs, Brantley Johnson, Victoria Johnson, Jenna Layne, Cheyann Light, Hannah Little, Grant Martin, Wyatt Martin, Amanda McKinney, Alex Meade, Logan Mullins, Josh Music, Jordan Pack, Matthew Patton, Dylan Poe, Justin Rowe, Nick Rowe, William Salisbury, Zachary Skaggs, Faith Thornsbury, Kionna Vance, Kaylee Williams and Matthew Wright.