2024 Grad Spotlight: Madison Blanton Preston

2024 Graduate Madison Blanton PrestonMadison Blanton Preston began the Career and College Promise (or College Now) program at Gaston College when she was a junior at East Gaston High School in 2021. Through College Now, she was admitted to the Associate Degree Nursing program in the spring of her senior year and started taking nursing classes the fall after she graduated from high school in 2022. 

She wanted to participate in College Now because she knew that she wanted to go straight into nursing school, and so it was important to get classes started as soon as possible to lighten the load during nursing school. Madison chose the ADN program because, she said, “I knew I wanted a career where I could finish my day feeling fulfilled and like I did something bigger than myself. Nursing is one career that I felt I could achieve these goals.” 

Through College Now, Madison was able to get all but two of her prerequisite/corequisite courses completed prior to starting nursing school. “This made my course load throughout the program lighter, and I feel played a big role in my success throughout the program,” she said. “I was able to truly put all my focus into my main courses.” College Now enabled Madison to complete the nursing program just two years after graduating from high school. Ordinarily, the program takes three years at the minimum. 

Madison plans to continue her education by pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing after graduating from Gaston College, and then possibly going further by earning her nurse practitioner license with a focus on women’s health. Her current career plans include working in the emergency department as a new graduate nurse and gaining new skills daily while working toward certifications in her field.  

“The College Now program is an awesome route for students to take whether you are sure of your career path or not,” said Madison. “I am thankful for my high school counselors and counselors at Gaston College that encouraged me to get involved in this program that has ultimately led to my success as a Gaston College graduate!” 

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