Date: Fri, May 5th, 2023

Stensland family will celebrate three graduates on Saturday

The Stensland family celebrated with Karson, fourth from left, as he was named student of the year for history and cultural studies department. Karson and his siblings Kohlson and Alison all celebrate graduations on Saturday.

Karson Stensland has been following in the footsteps of his older brother, Kohlson, for some time.

Saturday will be no different.

The 19-year-old will walk across the stage for graduation at Montana State University-Billings just as Kohlson will on Saturday. But Karson will be getting his associate of arts degree from Great Falls College MSU while Kohlson will be receiving his bachelor’s degree in management from MSUB.

“Mom didn’t really want to choose which (graduation) to attend, so she set this all up (for him to walk at MSUB),” Karson explained.

But the Stensland family milestones for Saturday don’t stop there.

Alison, their younger sister, will receive her high school diploma that day as well.

All three Stenslands were dual-enrollment students at Great Falls College.

“It’s been a good experience,” Karson said of his experience at Great Falls College. “I like the small class sizes. The instructors are always good at meeting with you if you need any extra help or just in regular class times getting you up to speed in everything.”

Karson was a home-schooled high school student when he began taking dual-enrollment classes. Eventually, he finished with 30 college credits before finishing high school. 

“At first, I was doing the generals, the (general education) core pretty much,” he said. “This year, when I was full-time here, I was just finishing the associate of arts.”

He plans to continue to follow Kohlson’s path and attend MSUB next year to get a bachelor’s degree in something business-related.

He said dual-enrollment allowed him to save money since the first two classes are free and all other classes are 50 percent tuition for dual-enrollment students.

“It also pretty much got me a year ahead in school,” he said.

Karson recently was named student of the year by the history and cultural studies department at Great Falls College last week.

“He’s a very enthusiastic student,” said Dr. Darryl Stevens, department chair at Great Falls College. “He studies very hard, always inquisitive and loved learning new material. All three of the Stenslands are just terrific students.”

Saturday will be a big day for the Stensland family.

“It’s a busy time for us,” Karson said with a laugh.

As for advice for anyone thinking of getting started as a dual-enrollment student?

“Make sure you go to classes,” Karson said. “You will do fine if you put in the effort.” 

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Record Number: 816