MILL CITY - Several hundred families, friends and classmates attended the 10th Oregon Connections Academy graduation ceremony earlier this month and students from Coos County are part of the Class of 2018. The tuition-free online school held an in-person commencement for its tenth senior class on June 9th at the State Fairgrounds in Salem.

ORCA Class of 2018 graduates from Coos County:

Riley Gray, Bandon

Carly Homenyk, Coos Bay

Rylee Nichols, Coos Bay

Elisabeth Rosales, Coos Bay

These residents are among just over 370 graduating high school seniors who have now joined a growing alumni base of Oregon Connections Academy, the state’s largest virtual school.

ORCA’s Class of 2018 has received nearly a million dollars in scholarship awards and a majority of the graduates have plans to further their education or start a career. Around 54 percent of the graduating seniors plan to attend a two or four-year college, 27 percent have decided to enter the workforce, 10 percent plan to attend vocational training and others have aspirations such as the military or missionary work.

ORCA’s high school program offers a wide variety of rigorous standards-based courses including honors and AP classes delivering a strong foundation for whatever path a graduate chooses. In addition the school features multiple Career Technical Education courses, to assist students for post-graduate opportunities whether that's in the workforce, on a college campus or some other option.

Dozens of students graduating this year have also earned college credits through the "College Now" dual credit program offered through the school. Students are able to take courses such as computer science, medical terminology, and English composition and earn college credits while enrolled in the online school.

ORCA currently serves nearly 4,000 students in grades K-12 statewide. Enrollment is now underway for the 2018-2019 school year. For additional information about the school, visit www.OregonConnectionsAcademy.com or call 800-382-6010.

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