To The Courier-Post

“It takes commitment, it takes dedication. This is for your future,” said author, speaker, and consultant, Christine McDonald.

On Saturday, September 12th, at 2 p.m., graduates joined together with family, friends, and community at Christ Fellowship Church in Hannibal to celebrate the earning of their High School Equivalency diplomas, formerly known as the GED. There were nine graduates this year, with six in attendance. Graduates beamed with pride as, Darcia Miller, test administrator and orientation leader, called their names to walk across the stage and receive their diplomas.

“The support of family, friends, and community plays a large role in student success,” said Elise Burch, HiSET Teacher at the Missouri Career Center.

Amanda Skinner, current graduate, gave a student testimony and spoke about her journey in earning her HiSET. With her father’s passing, she lost a large part of her support system. This was difficult. However, her father-in-law stepped up, providing support and encouragement that was helpful in her success.

Amanda’s story shows the value of family, friend, and community support in encouraging student perseverance. Amanda shared that, “Being in the HiSET Program has been a wonderful experience. The HiSET Program gave me the opportunity to better myself. I now have a wonderful job and can think about my future.”

Like everyone else, Amanda has had obstacles in her life, but she strives for a better future. As Christine McDonald said, “There is a reason why that rearview mirror is so small and your windshield is so big; you have to keep moving forward.”

There are many resources to help students in the HiSET program. Resources include the GAMM program, which helps students financially and with job placement; the Hannibal Business Women’s group that helps pay for the testing of female students; and Christ Fellowship Church that helps pay for the testing of male students. Community support also includes volunteer tutors; Stan Choate, Angela Thompson, Katherine Burt, and Gabrielle Wood. Addiotionally, many members of the community are generous enough to come and share their knowledge and life experience with students.

If you, or someone you know, is interested in the HiSET program please visit www.maconael.com to enroll in classes or call Lydia McClellan, Director of Adult Education at 660-385-2158.

Damica Kyle

Hannibal

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