the Cat With the High School Diploma
Most cat lovers believe that their cats are smart,
but how many would suspect that their pets could graduate
from high school? Meet Oreo Collins, a tuxedo cat from
Macon, Georgia, and the very first in her family to earn
a high school diploma.
According to news sources, a Better Business Bureau scheme to expose
Internet diploma mills has revealed that a two-year-old tuxedo cat named
Oreo has received a diploma from Jefferson High School Online following
a test and a $200 fee paid for by her owner, Kelvin Collins. It is suspected
that she is the first in her family to graduate from school but that
is a moot point as she wrote in her “life experience essay’ that
she had been adopted.
Rescued from a ditch when she was no more than a tiny ball of fluff by
Kelvin Collins, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Central
Georgia, Oreo was always encouraged to achieve her educational potential,
which she did by partaking in the BBB’s ongoing investigation of
online diploma mills.
In Collins own words: “Oreo’s a really smart cat… I
am tickled pink to give her an opportunity to get an education. We (the
BBB) do a lot of stories on these diploma mills, but a lot of times consumers
really don’t get it until you show them an example of how they
(the diplomas) aren't worth much.”
In the spirit of full disclosure, it must be said that while Oreo garnered
mostly A’s on the online test, Collins did help Oreo with both
the answers and the essay. But to be completely fair, Oreo stayed in
his lap throughout the test, and Collins got a little help, too.
It must also be said that the GED people claim that Oreo’s high
school diploma is not the same as a GED diploma. In the words of GED
testing spokesperson, Cassandra M. Brown:
“ The GED Tests cannot be taken online. They are only available for in-person
testing at an Official GED Testing Center.”
Still Brown also said that the GED Testing service has issued warnings
about programs like Jefferson High School Online.
Meanwhile back at the ranch, Oreo remains qualified but unemployed. He
new diploma may be all the more invalid given the fact that Collins admittedly
lied about Oreo’s age on the test. College seems doubtful and Oreo
is disappointed but dealing with it by indulging in some extra whiffs
of catnip and having fun with the automatic kitty litter box she received
as a reward for her scholastic achievements!