Charles Ernesto, a Lewiston Adult Education graduate who received his Master’s degree in cybersecurity from the University of Maine at Augusta in May 2022, congratulates Gregory Anderson at the June 14 ceremony. Ernesto spoke to Lewiston Adult Education graduates and encouraged them to continue their learning.
Lewiston Adult Education graduates heard words of encouragement from a former graduate who started his educational journey in English Language classes at the Lewiston Adult Learning Center. Charles Ernesto graduated in May with an advanced degree in cybersecurity from the University of Maine at Augusta.
Ernesto spoke to the graduates at the Lewiston High School gymnasium on June 14 about how he worried about his difficulty speaking English when he arrived in the United States in 2013.
“I went to Lewiston Adult Education to start from scratch so that I could do better, and that is where my whole journey of success started. I saw the difficulty but not the impossibility. At Lewiston Adult Education I met the teachers who had become family and the community that encouraged me to reach my goals.”
He thanked Lewiston Adult Education instructor Laurianne Champagne for her support, along with all of the teachers and staff at Lewiston Adult Education. He then encouraged the graduates to continue their learning.
“Before we separate to follow our individual paths, I want to take this opportunity to challenge you to continue to learn and to pursue continued education,” Ernesto said.
Lewiston Mayor Carl Sheline and Lewiston Public Schools Superintendent Jake Langlais also spoke to the graduates at the ceremony, acknowledging the graduates’ persistence and resilience. Lewiston Adult Education instructor Mary Hunter performed on the violin with student Ruth Kazadi the songs “Annie Laurie,” “Speed the Plough,” and “Lamplighter’s Hornpipe.” Hunter, a retired Bowdoin College professor of music, volunteers at the center and taught a violin class during the winter-spring 2022 semester.
The faculty also presented several student awards to recognize individuals who demonstrated academic excellence and achievement, improvement, resilience, work ethic and character. Recipients included: Dakota Tyrrell, Academic Honors award; Othman Bustan, Academic Achievement award; Yanmei Ji, The “Yes I Can!” award; Palmira de Carvalho, Homework Hero award; Gregory Anderson, Academic Support award, and Urgele Reningot, the Kindness Counts award.
For more information about earning a high school equivalency degree, workforce training, college preparation or English Language classes contact Lewiston Adult Education at 207-795-4141.