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Jason, a practical and dedicated GED student, grew up poor with his mother, father, and 3 siblings. While his mom was a college student for a time, she ended up having to drop out in order to work and support her family financially. Jason recalls that he “had to share time [with his mom] with 3 other siblings”, which made it difficult to receive the proper support he needed in school and at home.
While he “loved elementary school” and liked junior high, high school was an entirely different experience. Even though Jason played sports—a lineman on the football team—he was admittedly “lazy” and “didn’t care about going” to classes. With his expected graduation date looming just 3 months away, he decided to drop out, knowing that “there was no way I was going to graduate on time”. “The GED”, he concluded, “was a better route”.
After making this decision, however, he was dealt quite a surprise: the GED was not what he thought it was going to be! It took a lot more time and effort than he was prepared for. That being said, Jason firmly believes that “the things I study for the GED are more applicable to my life than what I learned in high school”, and subsequently that the “GED means more than a [high school] diploma ever did”. He feels that he is improving (test scores corroborate this feeling), particularly in science and reading. He also notices that “I know what people are talking about more now than before” in social situations. He can apply his knowledge to conversation and critical thinking.
His advice for someone taking the GED is to get a book to study with, “do what the book says—trust it . . . do tests if it tells you to to see where you’re at” adding that a student should “break down subjects into parts you can work on” to help comprehension and alleviate stress.
Jason is among many GED students this year who did not complete the full battery of tests before the end-of-year deadline. Although he was disappointed that he could not finish before then, he has not been discouraged, showing up to class regularly and participating actively in discussions and lessons. Jason is a student who makes his own success one assignment at a time.