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MCHS Pitcher Begins Baseball Season as a College Graduate

Tanner Cheek, a student at Marlboro County High School (MCHS), completed his Associate of Science Degree at Northeastern Technical College (NETC). He marched alongside other graduates in the NETC 2020 Fall Commencement Ceremony. When he graduates from high school in Spring 2021, he will do so with his Associate Degree in hand.

Cheek was among 20 students selected his freshman year to participate in the Young Scholar Program, a partnership between NETC and the Marlboro County School District that allows students from MCHS to begin taking college classes their freshman year. Funding students through this program was made possible through generous donations to the NETC Foundation, as well as the Department of Education's Dual Enrollment Pell Experiment – which NETC is only one of 44 colleges across the nation participating in. The Young Scholar Program, an extension of the 2022 Dual Education Plan, was designed for honors students in the freshman cohort, and provide them an early entry into the college experience.

This experience also taught Cheek how to balance a busy schedule. Cheek is the pitcher for the MCHS Baseball team and plans to enjoy his last year as a Senior before heading off to college. "I created a to-do list to help me prioritize my life," Cheek said. "After I finished coursework, I was able to do other things I am passionate about, like Baseball." Cheek, a successful student-athlete, is considering playing baseball on the collegiate level, but he is in no rush. He is happy pitching the season with his associate degree already in hand as a college graduate.

"In the beginning, I thought classes were going to be hard, but I found I enjoyed the information I was learning," Cheek said. "Psychology was my favorite subject." Cheek is still deciding where he wants to attend college after graduation, but he is sure he wants to pursue a 4-Year degree in Physical Therapy. After taking college courses at such a young age, Cheek is confident he will find academic success wherever he decides to enroll.

"It is always good to see young students excelling in academics and athletics. Tanner represents what we want for all students in Marlboro County School District," said Dr. Gregory McCord,
Marlboro County School District Superintendent. "He not only meets the criteria for a "college and career ready" graduate, but he embodies what all student-athletes can accomplish, academic success."

Cheek has a great support system and attributes a lot of his success to his "Mama" pushing him. "This was a great opportunity for Tanner to get ahead in his education and save a lot of money in the process," Kim Cheek, his mother, said. "I am so proud of the man he is becoming."

Cheek shares this thought with anyone considering participating in the dual enrollment program, "This is a chance to find out if college is right for you, don't waste this opportunity."

Northeastern Technical College prepares the workforce of Chesterfield, Marlboro, and Dillon counties through education and training. For more information about the Dual Enrollment Program at NETC, call (800) 921-7399 or visit

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