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UCS background earns 2021 grad junior status during his first year at college
UCS background earns 2021 grad junior status during his first year at college
Posted on 09/23/2021
Photo of Will Jenkins

The first year and half of college flew by pretty quick for Utica Community Schools graduate Will Jenkins.

In fact, they never existed.

Thanks to his work as a UCS student, Jenkins started Oakland University as a second semester sophomore and will finish the year with junior status.

“It's really exciting for me to have this status so early in my college career, and I'm excited for all of the opportunities these extra credits will give me,” Jenkins said. “If it weren't for the opportunities that UCS provided me, both in preparing me for an extremely successful high school and the IB program where I was able to earn a large amount of credits, I wouldn't be in nearly the position I am today.”

Jenkins had 51 credits and a large portfolio of activities when he graduated this year from the Gene L. Klida Utica Academy for International Studies.

In terms of the math involved, Jenkins:

  • Earned 16 credits from Advanced Placement courses;
  • Received 35 credits from his International Baccalaureate exams at the GLK-UAIS
  • Is currently taking 16 credits at Oakland University

It all adds up to 67 credits and junior status during his first year at OU.

“My UCS background really allowed me to grow as a scholar in ways that aren't possible everywhere,” Jenkins said. “I was noticed for my aptitude in math quite early, and UCS's flexibility allowed me to take math classes at above level, and put me in a position where at the start of high school I was ready to start taking AP classes.” 

Despite his head start in college, Jenkins said he is preparing to take four years of college to meet his goal of becoming a computer programmer.

“Many people ask me or just assume that I intend to graduate in three years with these credits coming in, but that isn't the route I plan to go on,” he said. “I plan to double major instead (Computer Science and Applied Statistics), to take advantage of the extra time I have.” 

While in UCS, Jenkins attended Messmore Elementary, Eppler Junior High School and the GLK-UAIS.

In addition to a successful academic career, Jenkins was a board member for the National Honor Society, co-founded and helped run the Coding Club for junior high school students, and was a four-year member of the Utica High School cross country and track team, where was captain the senior year.

His awards also include Macomb County Academic Dream team, math department freshman chair award at GLK-UAIS, the math department and science department awards during senior year, and being named to the All-Academic All-County for track.