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Pat Donohue Serves as Key Note Speaker at TASK GED Graduation Ceremony

On October 24th, the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK) celebrated its first annual GED Graduate Celebration to honor the twenty-one students who passed the GED test while attending TASK’s Adult Education Program (AEP). Pat Donohue, Assistant Provost for Community Engaged Learning and Partnerships gave the key note speech for the evening, focusing on the value of education. Pat was incredibly touched by the generosity of the graduates and inspired by their determination to succeed. Other speakers included Dennis Micai, Executive Director of TASK and Freeholder Pat Colavita, Jr. The event was attended by students, their families, tutors, TASK staff and Board members.

“Going back to school as an adult is not easy; one out of every three high school graduates would not pass the GED test,” explains Kelly Hansen, AEP Coordinator.  “It takes a lot of hard work, self-motivation, and dedication to accomplish this goal. These students deserve praise for their determination and perseverance.”

“This is a record number for TASK’s AEP,” explains Dennis Micai, TASK Executive Director.  “The AEP allows us to go beyond offering meals to feed the mind as well as the body.  Our program offers one-on-one tutoring as opposed to a traditional classroom setup.  It really seems to work well for our students as most of them were not doing well in a classroom setting when they dropped out of school as teenagers.  With the help of about seventy volunteer tutors we are able to work with each student towards his or her individual goals at his or her pace.  We are very proud of these hard-working individuals and we are thrilled to know that our program helped them earn their diplomas.”

The TASK Adult Education Program provides one-on-one tutoring in basic literacy, math, GED preparation, and computer skills for adult students, 18 years or older. Volunteer tutors offer caring, friendly assistance. Students meet with the program coordinator to set their own goals and establish timelines to meet them. TASK provides all of the necessary materials such as books, notebooks, pens, and reading glasses. Adult education is conducted in the TASK building, mostly during hours that do not conflict with our meal program. Our schedule is flexible, however, to accommodate the needs of our patrons.

TASK feeds those who are hungry in the Trenton area and offers programs to encourage self-sufficiency and improve the quality of life of its patrons.  The AEP operates nine times each week in the soup kitchen’s dining room before it opens to serve lunch in the afternoon and again before dinner in the evening. To volunteer as a tutor in the AEP, contact Kelly Hansen at (609) 695-5456 x 107 or kellyh@trentonsoupkitchen.org.

The following TASK AEP students earned their high school diplomas in 2012: Dashaya Barfield, Wayne Broughton, Chaney Coleman, Joseph Crew, Carlos Cribb, Nate Douglas, Michael Evans, Darryl Hardee, Teddy Harris, Lashon Johnson, Teresa Layton, Christina Murphy, Darnell Pitts, Eric Peoples, Joseph Queen, Evita Reddice, Joe Salas, Mathilda Sebasteamlpillai, Sonya Velez, Angelina Wade and Kendrick Willis.

Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK) Adult Education Program students who passed the GED test in 2012. Pictured from left (top row): Lashon Johnson, Joseph Crew, Darnell Pitts, Christina Murphy, Kendrick Willis, Nate Douglas, Wayne Broughton (bottom row): Evita Reddice, Angelina Wade, Chaney Coleman, Dashaya Barfield, Sonya Velez. Absent from photo: Carlos Cribb, Michael Evans, Darryl Hardee, Teddy Harris, Teresa Layton, Eric Peoples, Joseph Queen, Joe Salas, Mathilda Sebasteamlpillai.

For a PDF version, click here: Pat Key Note 11.26.12

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Media Contact:

Madeline Bell

609-771-2108

madeline.bell@tcnj.edu

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