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Cooperative Innovative High Schools

A Cooperative Innovative High School (CIHS) is a small public high school that partners with a Higher Education Institution and may be located on their campus. Currently, enrolled students have the opportunity to complete an associate degree program, diploma, certificate, or earn up to two years of college credit while completing a high school diploma. Enrolled students might also qualify to remain enrolled for five years in order to fulfill high school requirements.

Cape Fear Community College partners with Pender Early College High School , Southeast Area Technical High School , and Wilmington Early College High School .  Each of these Cooperative Innovative High Schools (CIHS) strive to recruit students who are seeking an alternative learning experience to that of a traditional high school. The application process begins during a prospective student’s 8th-grade year of middle school.  


The Local Education Agency determines each CIHS’s eligibility requirements and oversees the application process.  

Interested 8th-grade students and their families should contact their middle school counselor for information regarding the CIHS admissions process.

Cape Fear Community College Liaisons

In order to assist currently enrolled CIHS students in navigating Cape Fear Community College, a liaison is assigned to each respective CIHS. 

Pender Early College High School

Natasha Eachus Snyder
PECHS Liaison

SEA-Tech High School

Meredith Merrill
SEA-Tech Liaison
910-530-6300 ext. 77246

Wilmington Early College High School

Aimee Helmus
WECHS Liaison
Schedule a meeting with me

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