33 graduate from Metro North ABE

Metro North Adult Basic Education presented 33 adults with GED, Credit Recovery and Minnesota State Competency diplomas at a graduation ceremony in the Anoka High School auditorium June 8.

The theme that night was overcoming adversity to accomplish something great.

Five student speakers addressed graduates in addition to keynote speaker, Al Ickler, director of community education at Anoka-Hennepin Schools; and Darcy Hokkanen, program coordinator at the Anoka County Workforce Center.

“I have had to deal with anger, betrayal, confusion, depression and at times, even despair,” said Jane Standal, Metro North ABE graduate. “Then, one day, I had an epiphany. A GED gives me hope, and I began to plan for my future.”

Metro North ABE provides free programs for adults who want to acquire or improve their math, reading, grammar or writing skills; or for those who want to prepare for getting a job, a promotion, or pursue post-secondary education. The curriculum is developed in partnership with local workforce centers, colleges and businesses to ensure instructional content is aligned with real-life academic needs and relevant employment skills so students can prepare for college programs, get a job or start a successful career in their own neighborhoods and communities.

“I don’t think anyone really plans to drop out of school; however, certain circumstances arise that force us to make a decision that we eventually regret down the road,” explains Nadia Soussi, Metro North ABE graduate. “We are very fortunate for the adult education program that encourages and supports adults who have lost their way and remind(s) us that it is never too late to start over again.”

Adult students not already enrolled in a high school program may start class at any time throughout the year, and classes are offered year-round during the day and evening. Classes offered can help students improve basic reading, writing and math skills; learn and improve English language skills; and earn a diploma or GED.

Teachers are trained to work with adults, and all materials are designed to help the adult learner. Students have opportunities to work in groups and independently, and learning is done in the classroom, on the computer and online. Teachers help students set and meet their goals throughout their educational journey and can put students in touch with the resources they need to overcome obstacles on their path. Navigators often assist students with finding transportation, child care, computer help and more.

“ABE programs invest in people,” said Pat Adams, manager of Metro North ABE. “When our people succeed, the return on investment is priceless. In turn, our students become resources and will make a difference in the lives of others and in our community for years to come.”

To learn more about Metro North ABE, or how to get started or enrolled in free programs, call 763-433-4200 or visit www.metronorthabe.org.

Arlene Stone, a graduate from Metro North ABE’s Blaine Learning Lab location, had moments of laughter and tears as she shared her story about pursuing her diploma as an adult. Photos submitted Metro North ABE graduate Jennifer Hansen looks to find her family members and friends in the audience after accepting her diploma on stage. Also pictured are graduates Mikkila Goynes-Gaines and Adam Gerber. Courtney Harrington hugs classmate Aryanna Evans after the graduation ceremony June 8. Metro North ABE graduate Jordan Plath beams with pride after accepting his diploma on stage. Graduate Erika Shubert-Tanner poses for a photo with her family following the graduation ceremony.
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Metro North ABE graduate Jennifer Hansen looks to find her family members and friends in the audience after accepting her diploma on stage. Also pictured are graduates Mikkila Goynes-Gaines and Adam Gerber.