“Because I want a real job. Now, you have to have a diploma to dig ditches, and I want something that’s going to pay,” Angel said when asked why she wanted to earn her high school diploma.
For more than a decade, Angel lived without a high school diploma and struggled from job to job — unable to find something that would pay her enough to live comfortably. She dropped out of school when she was in tenth grade and tried several times to earn her GED, but attending GED classes as an adult proved to be unmanageable.
“It just didn’t work for me,” Angel said. “And then I found the Indiana Workforce Diploma Program, and it worked! I was just so proud of myself.”
Angel finished two years worth of high school credits in less than four months and finally earned a standard high school diploma, not a GED. She said the classes provided by Graduation Alliance were easier to understand than the courses she took as a teen, and she benefited from the program’s flexibility. She was able to continue working on her family’s farm while she went to school.
“My experience with the Indiana Workforce Diploma Program was very positive, and I had everybody there standing behind me,” Angel said. “If I couldn’t do something, I could ask for help, and I had my Academic Coach there the whole time rooting for me, telling me I could do it.”
When she graduated from high school, she and her mom looked into career pathways together, and Angel decided she wanted to follow in her mom’s footsteps by training to work in the medical field.
“I am going to college at Ultimate Medical Academy,” Angel said. “I’m studying to be a Medical Administrative Assistant.”
Angel is expected to graduate with her associate degree in 2023 and then wants to find a job working in a doctor’s office. Then, she wants to go back to college to become a nurse and, eventually, a nurse practitioner.
“Earning my diploma has made finding jobs easier,” Angel said. “I felt so happy because I pushed myself to actually finish high school and make things better for me!”