At her old high school, Aubrianna Morris says, her classmates seemed interested in anything but learning. All around her, girls were gossiping, immature boys were laughing, and it was hard for her to focus on her work.
During the Covid pandemic, things changed, but not for the better. Working remotely at home, she had trouble getting in touch with teachers. “Whenever I needed hands-on help, there was nobody.”
Transferring to Lowcountry Acceleration Academy, she found just the opposite. Instead of crowded classrooms, she found an airy, well-lit learning space with comfortable, cafe-style seating and a studious atmosphere.
“They have different rooms you can go into whenever you need a place where you can really focus on your work,” says the 17-year-old. “I like working in a quiet environment.”
And whenever she needed help, all she had to do was look up. When she hit challenging parts of her probability and statistics class, math coach Sarah Aquino was right there. “Anytime I needed help, she would put whatever she had going to the side just in order to help me and make me feel comfortable with the work that I was doing.”
Graduation candidate advocate Devon Jones also supported her in navigating the personal challenges that can sometimes get in the way. “He’s always there to help me out.”
Aubriaunna has a helpful spirit and is planning a career in nursing or another branch of health care. She recently joined the inaugural group of Lowcountry Acceleration Academy grads, with a big and boisterous group of family members and friends there to cheer her on.
“It represents a very proud day for her. It’s a stepping stone into the real world,” says her dad, Carlos. “It’s a proud moment for me too — she’s my first-born.”
What advice would Aubrianna offer to other students who might be struggling in traditional high schools? “Definitely come here to LAA,” she says. “Everybody here’s helpful and cheerful — and they can guide you to be successful in life.”