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Archive for Friday, June 18, 2010

Determination pays off for GED grads

Brookie Williams, left, secretary at the Adult Learning Center, visits with Ashley Dubree before Dubree was to participate in graduation ceremonies at the GED commencement on Thursday night. “I’m nervous,” said Dubree, who was one of two speakers at the ceremony at Free State High School.

Brookie Williams, left, secretary at the Adult Learning Center, visits with Ashley Dubree before Dubree was to participate in graduation ceremonies at the GED commencement on Thursday night. “I’m nervous,” said Dubree, who was one of two speakers at the ceremony at Free State High School.

June 18, 2010

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School district honors GED grads

The Lawrence School District presented about 80 people with GED diplomas at Free State High School Thursday. The grads took courses through the Lawrence Adult Learning Center. Enlarge video

As a teenager in state custody, Ashley Dubree had been moved around from group home to group home.

By the time she moved into her own apartment at age 18, Dubree was only considered a high school sophomore.

She was working two jobs, which kept her from completing her GED until she started working with the Lawrence Adult Learning Center earlier this year.

“I didn’t know I was ready for it, and then I finally gave myself the chance to really sit down and do it every day, and I graduated,” said Dubree, 22, who accepted her diploma with about 30 other Lawrence GED graduates Thursday night at Free State High School in a Lawrence school district ceremony.

Dubree, who works as a dispatcher for Blue Sky Satellite, spent mornings for about four weeks working with tutors and taking practice tests. She completed the exam in May.

The school district honored about 80 GED graduates for the 2009-2010 school year.

Scott Morgan, school board president, said the graduates can celebrate their achievements.

“You have shown something that is lacking in many, and it is something you have, which is drive,” he said.

Amy Phommasane, 30, said all of the graduates worked through adversity. Six years ago, she came to Lawrence from Laos with her husband, Justin Phommasane. She didn’t speak any English and started taking English as a second language classes at the East Heights Early Childhood Family Center.

Phommasane balanced learning a new language with raising her young son, working a full-time job at Kinedyne Corp., becoming a U.S. citizen and working toward her GED. She finished her GED in April and said she planned to attend Johnson County Community College to become a nurse.

“It just opened a new window for me to go anywhere I want,” Phommasane said. “I can be a nurse. That’s my dream.”

Dubree also plans to attend JCCC, to become a dental hygienist. She said each of the graduates could offer a similar lesson.

“Just don’t give up,” Dubree said. “Some people just aren’t ready at first, and they have to keep going. Just do it until you get it.”

Comments

lawrenceguy40 3 years, 10 months ago

It is good to see people working to improve their situation, instead of relying on the government to improve it for them. Congratulations!

Unfortunately, these folks haven't got much of a future ahead of them thanks to barry o and destructive policies. We can only hope that in 136 days a strong message is sent and that it is not too late to save our country.

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neolib 3 years, 10 months ago

Scattered has it right, having the fortune of parents who never divorced, I cannot express enough admiration for someone like Ashley with the fortitude to endure and transcend these less than auspicious beginnings. A true American hero.

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Scattered 3 years, 10 months ago

Congratulations to all of you!!! You have shown incredible determination and made intelligent choices in order to have a better life while overcoming obstacles that most of us cannot even imagine.

Many college students could take a lesson from you!

Congratulations again on taking education seriously, and may you continue on your path to reach all of your goals!

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anitliars 3 years, 10 months ago

Congrats to all GED grads. A lot of people do not realize that the typical GED grad has to actually learn more information than a lot of the high-school graduates; those GED tests are HARD! You won't regret getting one! Keep up the good work.

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IndusRiver 3 years, 10 months ago

Good, go to work. There is a 12 trillion-dollar debt waiting for ya.

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grammaddy 3 years, 10 months ago

Congratulations to all the grads!! Education doesn't end at graduation, it's a lifelong thing. Don't stop now. Push ahead on those dreams.Good luck to all of you! One of the most important things you will ever do. And no one can take it from you!

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Ralph Reed 3 years, 10 months ago

HUZZAH!

Well done. All of you.

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TheEleventhStephanie 3 years, 10 months ago

Congrats grads! This is awesome no matter how old you are!

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consumer1 3 years, 10 months ago

Congradulations to all who worked hard to achieve their goals.

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number3of5 3 years, 10 months ago

Congratulations grads. It took my sister 4 years to complete hers, but she figured that it takes 4 years to graduate from high school, so it was worth the effort and time.

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onrywmn 3 years, 10 months ago

Congratulations to all of the GED grads!

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