This week, we sat down virtually for a conversation with Dearborn STEM senior, Jonathan Vernett, who is a dually enrolled student at Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (BFIT). Jonathan shared about his experience at the Dearborn, how the pandemic has affected his learning, and where he sees his future.
Jonathan, a Roxbury native, recently moved to Dorchester. A bright, motivated and busy student at Dearborn STEM since 6th grade, he used to enjoy playing basketball after class, but because of the pandemic he now spends his free time playing video games remotely with friends.
Now that he is a senior and dually enrolled at BFIT, Jonathan completes most of his coursework through the college and now has only one class, English Language Arts, directly through the Dearborn.
When asked what he enjoys most about his dual enrollment education he says: “I enjoy the advantage of learning firsthand what to expect from college. The online setting is teaching me how things will look in the next couple of years, or when the pandemic ends. I’ve always wanted to go to college and the dual enrollment program helps me learn whether this is the right fit. And there is free tuition!”
The pandemic has affected students in different ways, but for Jonathan, who also works, he finds the biggest obstacle was the change in his motivation. “The pandemic has struck me hard.” he says. “It killed my motivation to want to do work in class, which is an issue when you take college level courses.”
Luckily, he feels he’s been able to find his groove again and the grades he wasn’t most proud of (Math, US Healthcare) are now a few of his greatest accomplishments this year. Thanks to staff at both the Dearborn and BFIT, he feels supported and knows help is available if he needs it.
Looking ahead to higher education, Jonathan is excited to continue his education at BFIT and plans to major in Health IT. Thanks to his dual enrollment, he will be a sophomore in Fall 2021.