Getting Ahead of the Pack

LHS student graduates a year earlier than his peers

LHS senior, Trevor Schmelzer.

LHS senior, Trevor Schmelzer.

Hannah Stevens, Assistant Online Website Editor

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Graduating high school seems like an important but common life benchmark. The vast majority of students need the four year period to acquire a diploma. But once in a while, a student rises to the challenge of graduating early.

Lancaster High School student Trevor Schmelzer opted to dig in and do whatever necessary to graduate in three years instead of the typical four.

“I decided to apply for early graduation when I figured out I had enough credits to complete high school early,” said 16-year old Schmelzer.

“I’m actually the second person in my family to do this, but my parents are happy I took the opportunity and my application got accepted.”

Kerri Means, an English teacher at LHS said Trevor planned ahead of time during his sophomore year to graduate early by taking extra courses above and beyond the regular course load that the majority of students take each semester.

16-year old Trevor Schmelzer will graduate from LHS a year early. Schmelzer is pictured with his family.

“He took two math classes during his sophomore year, so he would have 4 math credits by the end of his Junior (Senior) year,” she said.

“He also had to take two English classes during this last year as well. That can be overwhelming.”

Overwhelming for most, maybe. But Schmelzer proved he was determined to meet his goal. He studied both American Literature and British Literature simultaneously. Not only was Schmelzer enrolled in CP English 12, but he like all senior students, he had to complete the senior research paper to meet graduation requirements.

“Trevor had mentioned graduating early. We kind of had mixed feelings on the idea,” said Marilee Schmelzer, Trevor’s mother.

One concern Schmelzer’s parents had was that their son’s friends would still be in school without him.

“We felt that Trevor would possibly regret graduating early, just because he wouldn’t get to hang out with his friends so much once he graduated,” she said.

“Life totally changes once you graduate and get out in the real world. Trevor is a goal setter and a hard worker.”

An example of Schmelzer’s carpentry skills

Schmelzer, who turns 17-years old at the end of May has his future completely mapped out.

“My future plans are to work a full-time job, and then in March of 2020, I will be enlisting into the Navy.”

Do the math. If he stays on track, he may possibly retire from a 20-year naval career at the ripe old age of 38.

By the way, not only is Schmelzer a goal-minded stellar student, he is also skilled in carpentry. He enjoys creating unique and interesting pieces such as the small accent table he built for his mom for Mother’s Day this month.