LIMA — Perry High School junior Gracie Prine has got it all figured out.
The 17-year-old is plowing through her classes and is miles ahead of her fellow students. Prine carries a 4.4 grade point average. She already has an Associate of Science degree from Rhodes State College with a concentration in Psychology.
“I took both high school and college at the same time,” she said. “Some [classes] I took there [at Rhodes State] and some I took here [at Perry]; it just depended on the class.”
When Prine started college, she was only 14 and still a freshman at Perry.
“She’s one of our rock stars that we have in our building. She’s really taken advantage of the college credit class option that the Ohio Department of Education offers and then she’s also taking advantage of our master scheduling where we kind of cater to those kids that want to advance in their subject areas and we make a schedule that allows them to be flexible, to come and go in their school day. Now that she’s a junior, she’s only here until 9:30 a.m., then everything else is off-campus,” said Linda Hoersten, guidance counselor at Perry High School.
Did her fellow college classmates think something was different about the then-14-year-old?
“I didn’t tell anybody [my age] so they kind of assumed I was their age and they kind of treated me like anyone else,” Prine said.
“I want to be a psychiatrist, and so I’m just working towards that goal, working toward medical school,” she said.
Prine is on a fast track to achieve her goals.
“I’m going to start at Bluffton University in the summer or fall [of this year] and then I want to go either to Columbus or Dayton for medical school,” she said.
Her chosen career field is something she believes is needed.
“I want to be a child psychiatrist. They’re really in short supply, and I really want to help. I see a real big need for it,” she said.
As one might expect, Prine has no time for extracurricular activities, as she balances being both a high school and a college student. She does volunteer in the elementary school, helping out every Friday last year. This year, she is there Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. or even later.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.