Nearly 100 Saline County residents celebrated the completion of their GED
through the Saline County Adult Education Center at a graduation ceremony at the
PTC Little Rock-South site on Friday, June 13.
Pulaski Tech student Jeremy England, who completed his GED at the center, was the guest speaker.
"It took a lot of hard work as I had not been in school in more than ten years," England said. "All the same, a couple of months later I found myself taking the G.E.D."
Two of this year's 97 graduates were among the top 25 scorers in the state. Of the 8,688 Arkansans who took the GED Test, 7,528 passed the test. Kiowa Adams of Benton scored the highest in the state with a near perfect score of 778 out of 800. Sarah Zabrinski tied for the 14th highest score in the state. Both Adams and Zabrinski were honored last month at the Arkansas 2014 GED Awards Ceremony at the Arkansas State Capitol.
"They have worked very hard toward this milestone, and we are exceptionally proud of our graduates this year. We want recognize their achievement," said Yvonne Dougherty, director of the Saline County Adult Education Center.
Of this year's graduates, 22 scored high enough to receive a full-tuition GED scholarship to attend Pulaski Technical College this fall.
"What we are truly celebrating here tonight are second chances," England said. "A second chance can go a long way if given at an opportune moment... meaning, the moment when one decides that their education is far more important than excuses."
Guests included Rep. Kim Hammer of Benton; Robert Holt, director of Let Our Violence End (LOVE); and Dr. Margaret Ellibee, president of Pulaski Technical College.
Pulaski Technical College operates the Saline County Adult Education Center located at 16936 Interstate 30 in Benton at Exit 117. The center offers General Educational Development (GED) preparation, basic skills, English as a Second Language, and computer literacy programs for residents of Saline County and the surrounding area.