Dylan Smith-Sutton logged plenty of hours inside the walls of Carl Albert High School during his senior year.
The Oklahoma City University freshman was honored Thursday at the state Capitol for his efforts in the National Math and Science Initiative.
The initiative is a public-private partnership with companies such as Boeing and Lockheed Martin.
Northrop Grumman pledged $900,000 to help fund the program for three years at Carl Albert, which is in the Midwest City-Del City School District, and at Lawton's Eisenhower High School.
The initiative is aimed at military families. Mid-Del and Lawton schools have large student populations that come from families serving at Tinker Air Force Base and Fort Sill, but all students at the schools were invited to receive instruction in math, science and English and take Advanced Placement courses on those subjects.
Students who earn qualifying scores of 3, 4 or 5 on the AP exams receive $100 checks for each qualifying score, said Dale Fleury, senior regional director for National Math and Science.
Smith-Sutton said the money he received Thursday comes in handy. His father is a retired military service member and is disabled. His mother also served in the military and was seriously injured in a car accident.
“I went through a difficult time,” Smith-Sutton said. “My dad is 100 percent disabled, and my mom has also had some health problems. You have to pick up money wherever you can. I started looking for jobs when I was 13.”
Smith-Sutton spent up to seven days a week at Carl Albert managing the difficult course load of Advanced Placement classes. He received qualifying scores on three of the four Advanced Placement exams he took as a senior.