FREMONT – Thomas Gluth acknowledges he didn’t always embrace math as a school subject.
But he got better at it through his years at Fremont Ross High School and also as a Terra State Community College student, where he earned college credits from Terra classes through the Early College Program.
“I eventually fell in love with what I was doing,” Gluth said, adding that he kind of strives through adversity.
Gluth is part of the first cohort of Early College High School Program students at Fremont Ross that will graduate from Terra State Community College with their associate degrees.
Kian Collins, Ethan Druckenmiller, Noah Eberly, Michael Estep and Amrynn Buchman will join Gluth as students from the program’s first group to receive degrees from Terra State.
More than one degree
Jon Detwiler, Fremont City Schools superintendent, said some of the students will graduate with more than one degree.
Fremont Ross partnered with Terra State and announced the program in 2016, with an emphasis on targeting students who would be the first generation in their families to get college degrees.
The district’s Early College Program is an advanced academic program that allows high school students to earn college credits during their four years at Fremont Ross.
Students enrolled in the program will have the opportunity to study manufacturing, engineering and technology, or health information technology.
Upon successful completion of the program, each student will have earned their high school diploma, a career-related certificate and an associate’s degree from Terra State.
Anthony Walker shifted over from his role as Fremont Middle School principal at the time to take over as the district’s Early College coordinator.
Walker said three of the students in the first Early College cohort, including Gluth, will be attending engineering school at the University of Toledo.
Program now has 60 students
The program has grown since Ross and Terra State started their partnership.
Walker said there are now 60 students in the Early College Program.
“They’re good kids. They’re really good kids,” Walker said.
Gluth is graduating summa cum laude from Terra State with a degree in manufacturing technology.
He is a Phi Theta Kappa member and said he is also in line to graduate as the valedictorian at Fremont Ross.
Collins said he was approached as an eighth grade student about entering the Early College Progam.
His parents encouraged Collins to be part of the program’s first group.
Collins said he wanted to be an engineer from a young age.
“I was worried about the workload going into it,” he acknowledged.
May seek NASA job
He plans to continue his education at the University of Toledo’s mechanical engineering program after graduating magna cum laude from Terra State.
Collins said he’ll have three co-op opportunities and has his eye on possibly working at NASA in the future.
Eberly said he saw an opportunity with the program and had always had an interest in engineering.
He said he’s talked to a few engineering companies and feels like his experience in the classroom will definitely help him with future job possibilities.