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PCC grad’s dedication pays off

Published Wednesday, September 25, 2013
by Bonnie Davis

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Tags: ABS Adult Basic Skills continuing education pcc Piedmont Community College
Categories: categoryContinuing Education categoryPress Release
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In observance of Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, Piedmont Community College’s Adult Basic Skills (ABS) program is showcasing an ABS graduate whose story can help to inspire others.

Piedmont Community College’s (PCC) Adult Basic Skills program has many outstanding students and graduates who enter its program to complete their high school equivalency. One of those, Karen Wilson of Yanceyville, showed much determination in achieving her goal, according to ABS staff members. Her story is a familiar one of a busy woman who came back to school while taking care of a family and holding down a job.

Wilson is a married and has two children and eight grandchildren. She is employed as a bus driver for the Caswell County School system and as a hair stylist. She also serves as a minister at her church, Christ Within Deliverance Ministries.

Wilson dropped out of Dan River High School in Ringgold, VA 31 years ago because she was pregnant. Plus, she says she really was not interested in school at the time. Once she had her child, she decided not to return to school because she had to support her family.

Approximately two years ago, Wilson enrolled in free classes in the ABS program at PCC because she had a long-term goal of getting a degree in business administration. However, she needed to complete her high school equivalency first. Wilson describes the teachers and staff at PCC as encouragers. “My instructors used different tactics to help me as well as the other students learn in the classroom,” said Wilson. With mathematics being her most challenging subject, Karen said, “I would often get frustrated; however, my teachers encouraged me to continue.”

“During her time in the ABS program, Wilson completed all parts of the official GED® exam fairly quickly, with exception of the mathematics test. Wilson shared that during official testing; she would lose her focus and become very anxious. With the assistance of ABS instructors, she finally learned how to relax during testing; passing the official mathematics test on April 18,” said Cynthia Worth, GED Chief Examiner/ABS recruiter.

Leslie Wyatt, one of Wilson’s instructors in the ABS program, praised Wilson’s determination. “Karen is the perfect example of dedication,” she said. “Despite the obstacles, she stuck with it and finished. I am so proud of her and her accomplishments to date.”

With her high school equivalency in hand, Wilson is moving on toward her goal. She is currently enrolled as a first-year student at PCC, where she is majoring in Business Administration. Wilson is excited about her future because she is seeing herself achieve something that her parents, aunts, and uncles have never achieved. She is majoring business administration to further her hair styling business, and to assist her husband with his business.

When asked what advice she would give other students enrolled in the GED program, Karen said, “Don’t give up, and don’t ever give up. The best is yet to come! Don’t ever give up on your goals.”

New Changes to the GED® Test

The current version of the GED® test expires at the end of December 2013. The current version will be replaced with the new 2014 GED® test. Because of the change, anyone who has not passed all five parts of the GED® test will need to retake all of the tests in the new format. The last day of testing here at Piedmont Community College will be the week of December 16 - 18, 2013. For further information on the GED®program, please contact Sylvia Gault at (336) 322-2155 or Lori Watlington at (336) 694-8057.