When Hagen Walker graduated recently from Davenport North, he was carrying just a little more paper than his compatriots.

Walker, 18, got his diploma and an associate degree in liberal arts — something North offers in partnership with Eastern Iowa Community College. He also graduated with an associate degree in science.

Now he is planning to go to Utah State to study mechanical and aerospace engineering, he said. After that he wants to work at what he called his “dream companies.”

“I’d like to work at SpaceX or NASA,” he said.

His interest in science and working in the aerospace industry began during his studies after he was able to see the concepts he was learning being used.

“I’ve always been a big math person, and I really enjoyed my calculus classes, and then when I took physics and it was applied math and applied calculus, I sort of just fell in love with that aspect,” Walker said.

The associate in science is not something offered via the Davenport Community School District’s partnership with EICC, so Walker went after it himself, he said. He took those classes during the summer or online during the school year.

Having the two associate degrees is helping him accomplish his goals by taking care of the general education requirements he would have had to meet at college, Walker said.

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