Program enables youth and adults to earn a high school diploma and workforce certificate for free, opening a pathway to higher education.

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi (TAMU-CC) has announced that it will offer Cengage Learning’s Career Online High School (COHS) to prospective students and members of the community. The accredited program will provide a path to post-secondary education and vocational training for students who do not currently possess the high school diploma required for admission.

TAMU-CC is the first university in the Texas A&M University System to offer COHS in an on-campus, hybrid learning lab model through its partnership with Coastal Compass and Workforce Solutions of the Coastal Bend. It will be offered free to out-of-school youth and adults, who will be able to earn an entry-level workforce certificate concurrently with the high school diploma.

“We are addressing the dropout concern within our community by offering a chance for out-of-school youth and adults to earn their accredited high school diploma and gain credentialed real-world career skills,” said Danell Reilly, Administrative Associate IV of TAMU-CC’s Office of Community Outreach. “This partnership will help students build the skills they need to succeed.”

It is estimated that 19.3 percent of the Corpus Christi population 25 years of age and older lack a high school diploma.* COHS was designed to re-engage these adults back into the education system and prepare them for post-secondary career education, additional workforce training credentials, and better job opportunities.

“The majority of local jobs require a high school diploma and some type of post-secondary education,” stated Dr. Janet Cunningham, Executive Director of Citizens for Educational Excellence, which provides support for the Coastal Compass center. “COHS provides a great option for young adults who have dropped out of school to earn both.”

“We are extremely excited to offer COHS through TAMU-CC,” said Taryn McKenzie, Cengage Learning’s Executive Director of Workforce Development. “Through this partnership, residents can apply for federal funding to earn a high school diploma along with a workforce certificate to help reach their career aspirations.”

The program will be offered via a hybrid model in which the online curriculum is delivered in on-campus learning labs that provide computers, career counseling, and career placement services. In addition, COHS pairs each student with an Academic Coach, who assists with developing an individual career plan, offers ongoing guidance and encouragement, evaluates performance, and connects the learner with the resources needed to demonstrate mastery of the course material. Classes are supported by board-certified instructors and students have 24/7 access to the online learning platform. Students who have prior learning credits from other accredited schools can transfer in the coursework, expediting their path to completion.

Interested residents can learn more by attending TAMU-CC’s Career Online High School Kick-Off on Wednesday, June 21, from 10:30a.m.–3:00 p.m. at Coastal Compass Education & Career Resources Center located at La Palmera Mall, 5488 S. Padre Island Dr. #1082, Corpus Christi, Texas. For more information, go to

About Career Online High School
Career Online High School was developed in 2012 through a partnership by ed2go, a division of Cengage that provides students with online continuing education and career training, and Smart Horizons Career Online Education in an effort to provide affordable, career-based online education opportunities for the millions of adults in the United States without high school diplomas. Visit for more information.

About Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi
Offering more than 80 of the most popular degree programs in the state, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi has proudly provided a solid academic reputation, renowned faculty, and highly rated degree programs since 1947. The Island University has earned its spot as the premier, urban doctoral-granting institution in South Texas, supporting a UAS test site, two institutes and more than 40 research centers and labs. Discover your island at