Baby doesn’t bump student from graduation

Tyler Clarke
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Prince Albert Collegiate Institute graduate Mollie Strom, 17, is seen with her six-week-old daughter Scarlet Elizabeth-Rose, on Thursday -- a day after she graduated alongside 21 of her peers. 

Pregnancy not only failed to prevent Mollie Strom from graduating high school, but it strengthened her resolve to set more ambitious goals.


Only six weeks after giving birth to Scarlet Elizabeth-Rose, Strom joined 21 peers in graduating from Prince Albert Collegiate Institute on Wednesday.

Originally interested in taking up cosmetology as a profession, Strom, 17, said that having a child altered her worldview.

“I want to be a role model for her and create a good life for her,” Storm said at the school on Thursday, while teachers took turns carrying her infant around the school.

Although everything appears to have panned out, having a child while in high school wasn’t easy, Strom said.

Correspondence classes and a block class at Wesmor Community High School, where there’s a childcare facility available to students, helped her complete her schooling on time.

Prince Albert Collegiate Institute’s arts-based reputation is well earned, Strom said.

Encouraging students to be themselves and to stay true to one’s self pushed her toward writing -- a medium in which she’s able to express herself.

Strom plans on taking university classes in the near future in order to better plan her next course of action. Following her interest in writing, one possible career path might be that of an English teacher, she said.

“I want to take university classes, so I can decide from there, with my door wide open.”

I want to be a role model for her and create a good life for her. Mollie Strom

Strom’s story of pursuing post-secondary education is indicative of this year’s graduating class, which has a record number of grads headed to university.

Of this year’s graduating class of 22, six are going to university.

“It creates opportunities,” principal Dawne Adams said of university. “Any kind of education opportunity opens doors -- not necessarily college or post-secondary.”

This year’s graduating class was a diverse group, she said -- a group of students whom she’s proud of seeing through their final year of high school.

This was Adams’ first year as principal at Prince Albert Collegiate Institute.

“We had students who have taken the typical three years and completed strong academically … and we had some students who’d taken some time off and came back and were 19 years old, and had success that way,” Adams said, noting that all graduating students found their way to a diploma.

Included in this year’s graduating class is valedictorian Alex Henry, who as holder of the school division’s highest academic average also received the governor general’s medal.

Organizations: Prince Albert Collegiate Institute, Wesmor Community High School

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