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Graduating high school is hard enough to do when you’re a teenager, but it gets exponentially harder when you’re an adult. Many high schoolers have the benefit of being able to focus on their studies without having to think about work or supporting a family. But the responsibilities we devote our time and energy to only increase as we get older, making it more difficult to further your education as an adult. Getting your high school diploma as an adult doesn’t have to be impossible, though. Career Online High School and HCPL are here to help. 

What is Career Online High School? 

Career Online High School (COHS) is a program that allows students over the age of 19 to begin or complete their high school education. The program takes place entirely online in a series of self-paced courses, allowing you to work your education goals into your busy schedule. You can access the courses at any time, but you won't be alone on your journey. Trained library staff will be available to help and direct you to the resources you need to succeed. Upon completing COHS, you will be awarded a high school diploma from an accredited high school, a career certificate in one of 10 in-demand fields, as well as a career portfolio that you can use to get started on your job search. 

person graduating

Who can apply? 

If you are over the age of 19 and have successfully completed the eighth grade, you are qualified to apply for COHS to complete your high school education. If you meet these criteria, the only other thing you need to begin the application process is a library card in good standing with HCPL. “Good standing” simply means that you don’t have any lost or overdue items, and you don’t have any outstanding fines. You can pay fines from the My Account tab on the HCPL website. Don’t have a card yet? You can apply for an iKnow card—which gives you access to all of our ebooks, e-audiobooks, databases, and streaming music and video—for free right from your computer. 

How do I get started? 

If you meet the qualifications and think that COHS is the best way to achieve your educational goals, the first step to getting started is to fill out the online assessment. This assessment includes a brief survey, as well as a short essay question. All of this will help determine if COHS is going to be the best fit for you to finish high school. You’ll hear back from the library within three business days to discuss starting the prerequisite course. Upon passing this course, you will schedule an interview with the library to go over the rest of the admissions process. From there, you will be ready to begin earning your high school diploma online. Not sure if COHS is right for you, or considering the GED instead? Check out Learning Express Library's High School Equivalency Center for another way that HCPL can support you in completing your high school education.

Furthering your education is always a challenge, but HCPL and COHS are here to make it as easy as possible for you to get your high school diploma as an adult.  If this is the next move for you, we look forward to being with you every step of the way. 

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