Several students and their families filled the grill at Southeast Community and Technical College on Thursday to celebrate the 27 students who received their GEDs.
SKCTC President Dr. Lynn Moore addressed the students during the ceremony about their achievement.
“Graduates, we are so proud of you,” said Moore. “That’s a tough test. It’s not just a walk in the park to go and be very well prepared and to pass that GED test.”
Moore said the graduates sacrificed a lot of time and effort to obtain their goal of earning a GED. She said the effort demonstrated courage and the ability to utilize resources.
“Some people go through life and they’re blessed with resources, and they never take advantage of them,” said Moore. “You guys are proven now. You’ve proven that you can set a goal and that you can work hard and you can do whatever it takes to achieve that goal.”
Moore told the graduates they can’t stop with earning their GED. She said they have to continue learning and pushing forward to challenge themselves.
“The future is bright for each and every one of you,” said Moore.
GED graduate Danny Wilson, a member of the 2013-2014 class, spoke about his journey to earning a GED.
He participated in the graduation ceremony 18 years ago at Middlesboro High School. He said he was allowed to walk across the stage, but he was three credits short of graduating.
“Eighteen years ago it was just a piece of paper,” said Wilson.
Wilson explained he believed he had to go to work to have something. In March, he decided the job he had wasn’t what he needed it to be.
Wilson said he went to put in an application at DTR and spent three hours with a temporary service agency. He then received the news the business would need to see his diploma So, he needed to get his GED.
“After several hours of endless algebra problems… they (the GED program and Middlesboro Police Officer Barry Cowan) helped me get through another door that was closed,” said Wilson.
GED graduate Jeffery Harris was recognized by Director of Adult Basic Education and GED Travis Cox for having the highest score on the GED test. He scored a 3,500 out of 4,000 on the test.
Cox complimented the graduates for obtaining their GEDs.
“It’s something that no one can ever take away from you,” said Cox.
Cox also encouraged all the graduates to apply for college.
During the ceremony, Dr. Vic Adams, director of the Middlesboro campus, gave the introduction. Josh Brooks, office support assistant, gave the invocation.
Professor of Adult Basic Education Patty Burnside presented the certificates to each graduate.
The graduates included:: Aaron Risner, Amanda Carroll, Brenda Laws, Brian Marlow, Candice Riggs, Casey Brummitt, Catherine Rogers, Courtney Smith, Danny Johnson, Danny Wilson, David Smith, Eric Macey, Eric Ramsey, Gary Baker, Jake Mason, Jeffery Harris, Jerry Smith, Lee Hoskins, Leslie Gambrel, Lorean Perdue, Marcus Sinkhorn, Micah Sorter, Naomi Fee, Nicholas Garren, Olivia Farr, Samantha Hill and Victor Prater.
Anthony Cloud can be contacted at 606-302-9090 or on Twitter @AnthonyCloudMDN.