NICEVILLE — For father and daughter Matthew and Kameryn Harms of Crestview, higher education has been a journey they've shared together.
Now, after several nights of doing homework at the same table, they've graduated together. Northwest Florida State College had its 52nd annual commencement May 6 at the Niceville campus.
In 2007, Matthew Harms ended his military career with the United States Air Force to lay down some roots. After a couple of short years, he decided to return to college.
"I asked myself, how can I expect my children to go to college if I haven't?" Matthew said.
This is what inspired him to pursue a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Project Management (Acquisitions). After eight years of juggling a career with Okaloosa County Water and Sewer with his home life and coursework, he anticipated graduating alongside his daughter.
Kameryn Harms enrolled at the NWFSC Collegiate High School in 2014 as a sophomore, and she worked toward earning her high school diploma and associate degree.
"I have enjoyed my time at Collegiate because it has given me an opportunity to experience higher education with my father," Kameryn said. "We help one another. I've tutored him in college algebra, too."
With mutual pride for one another, the Harms duo was excited to graduate. Kameryn will continue her education on a pre-law track at the University of Florida. Matthew plans on pursuing a graduate degree at the University of West Florida.
For both, NWFSC has provided many memories and opportunities.
"I know that if I had gone to college after high school I wouldn't have finished," Matthew said. "NWF has given me the opportunity to succeed while having contests with my daughter to see who had the most homework. Graduates from NWF go on to do great things and I'm excited to see what's next for both of us."