David Trask, his daughter Samantha Trask, and friend Samuel Heikkinen prepare for the Graduation Ceremony.
On June 8th, surrounded by hundreds of family members, friends, teachers and advocates, more than 170 adults graduated from Lewiston Adult Education with their GED or High School Diploma.
These individuals, ranging in age from the late teens to mid-50’s, juggled jobs, family and school as they put in the hundreds of hours of work required to complete high school credit or prep for the rigorous GED exams. Many of these graduates returned to Lewiston Adult Education to complete their High School Credential to enhance their qualifications for a job, go on to college or simply to fulfill long-held goals.
One member of the class of 2010, David Trask, was recognized for returning to finish his GED after a decade-long hiatus. Although he left high school nearly 34 years ago, Trask returned to start working on his GED in 1990. In 1991 Trask left without completing his GED, only to return in 2009, when he resumed working with the same teacher, Don Roux.
“When David first came here I had hair and teeth!” Roux joked during Graduation.
Trask had returned to finish his GED after his full-time position as a school bus driver was reduced to part-time. Trask needed a full time position, and as he began his job search, he found that all of the jobs he wanted required a High School Diploma or GED.
“I realized that I really did need my GED to get a good-paying job, that a GED would open doors for me. And I wanted to set a good example for my kids.”
Trask was certainly successful setting an example for others. When Trask returned to the Adult Learning Center, did not come alone. As he resumed work on his GED, he encouraged his grown children to join him.
Trask said “I started going to classes, and said to my daughter, ‘Look, I’m doing it!’ So she started going, and then two of her friends started going!”
At the ceremony on June 8th, Trask marched across the stage followed by his daughter, Samantha Trask, her boyfriend, and another friend of hers. Trask’s son is still working on his GED at Lewiston Adult Education, but Trask hopes to watch him graduate next year.
Trask said, “I’m sorry it took losing my full-time position to get me going again. But it’s never too late- I’ve seen folks older than me there! I want to show others that if we can do it, they can too.”
Also recognized at the graduation ceremony were those who completed workforce training certification programs, including CNA, Clerical Certificate, Culinary Arts Certificate, Medical Office Certificate and Welding Certificate. Participants in the College Transitions Program and the Career Transitions: Health Care Edition program.
For information on Lewiston Adult Education programs, visit www.lewistonadulted.org or call 795-4141.
by Jessica Crabtree
on June 18, 2010
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