asakiyume: (Iowa Girl)
[personal profile] asakiyume
The other day I went to a high school graduation, but today was graduation for the people in the special program I help out in. There's some overlap between the two graduations, but a lot of today's graduates were not at the high school graduation.

I was standing near the front to try to take some photos, and who should I find at my left elbow at one point but the young mayor of Holyoke! I blurted out, "You're one of my heroes," and then told him the story of the girl pointing him out with pride to her relative.

He spoke at this graduation, too, said he felt especially close to this program because of his own parents: his mom dropped out of high school because she was pregnant, and his father dropped out too. In her forties, his mother went back to school and got her GED, and then--even though she had never thought it would be possible--she went on to become a nurse.

Two former graduates spoke about what they were doing now (one is in a transition-to-college program and one is in college)--they said that whenever they have something they don't understand, they come back in to get help from the teachers here. Then several of the students spoke. One talked about how he thought he was going to have to drop out of the program because he couldn't find childcare for his son, but the staff wouldn't let him--they had him bring his son along. Another spoke about dropping out of school and then getting in trouble with the law and thinking he wouldn't be allowed back because he had an ankle bracelet police monitor device on, and being welcomed by the teachers. I saw the mayor wiping tears from his eyes.

And this time, I got pictures. I don't feel free to share them, but believe me: they are beautiful.

Date: 2017-06-15 07:12 pm (UTC)
amaebi: (Default)
From: [personal profile] amaebi
Oh my, oh my, that's so moving.

I don't suppose you might be willing to post this on fb, in a shareable form?

Date: 2017-06-15 07:46 pm (UTC)
amaebi: (Default)
From: [personal profile] amaebi
Thank you so much!

Date: 2017-06-15 10:17 pm (UTC)
sovay: (Lord Peter Wimsey: passion)
From: [personal profile] sovay
And this time, I got pictures. I don't feel free to share them, but believe me: they are beautiful.

Thank you for writing this up.

Date: 2017-06-15 10:30 pm (UTC)
ivy: Two strands of ivy against a red wall (Default)
From: [personal profile] ivy
Awww, congratulations to all the recent grads.

Date: 2017-06-16 03:21 am (UTC)
ckd: two white candles on a dark background (candles)
From: [personal profile] ckd
Congratulations to them, and thank you both for working in this program and for sharing this. The small things add up, but more importantly things that are small in the societal perspective are huge in the individual perspective.

You and these teachers change lives for the better, all the time. I'm not Jewish (culturally or religiously) but the concept of tikkun olam is one that strongly resonates for me.

So much love.

Date: 2017-06-16 03:59 am (UTC)
minoanmiss: (Default)
From: [personal profile] minoanmiss
That sounds beautiful through and hrough. :)

Date: 2017-06-16 12:38 pm (UTC)
gaudior: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gaudior
That sounds beautiful. They have really good reason to be proud.

Date: 2017-06-16 03:35 pm (UTC)
osprey_archer: (Default)
From: [personal profile] osprey_archer
Oh, that does sound wonderful. The pictures must be gorgeous.

Date: 2017-06-19 04:21 pm (UTC)
petrichor_pirate: (Default)
From: [personal profile] petrichor_pirate
That sounds so lovely. Thank you for sharing!

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