CAL Success Story

GED Graduate Jacqueline: Realizing Dream to Help ‘Even in Death’

rolled up diplomas on a table

Getting past the GED test might lead to your childhood dream—even if it’s to become a mortician.  So the story goes for Jacqueline, a 2018 GED graduate at Jacksonville Public Library, who dreamed of becoming a mortician. Despite receiving a certificate of completion from high school, Jacqueline, who’s enrolled in Florida State College at Jacksonville’s mortuary science program, realized she’d need more than that to pursue the career she envisioned.

Dante Chandler: Diploma helped ‘get foot in door’

Image of Dante Chandler at his Career Online High School graduation

Dante Chandler, 32 years old and happily married, professes that his family and five children are his “motivation for living and being a better person.” One thing he looks forward to each week is making a trip with the kids to the public library, typically the Willowbranch Branch Library, which is near the kids’ school, or the Main Library if they’re venturing close to downtown.

Desiree: Checking high school diploma off bucket list

Image of Desiree Lazarus at her Career Online High School graduation

At age 51, Desiree Lazarus took the plunge, and did something she’s had on her bucket list for a long time—she went “back to high school” to get her diploma. After several failed attempts at the GED—she passed the social studies, science and reading sections easily but had difficulty with the writing and math—she’d all but thrown in the towel when she learned about Career Online High School (COHS) at the library.

Khadi: From READ to GED: 'Poster Child' for Success

GED Graduation Image of Khadi

Khadidiatou “Khadi” Ndiaye, who hails from Senegal, West Africa, first came to Jacksonville Public Library’s Center for Adult Learning (CAL) in 2006 to learn English. As an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) student, she attended English classes on and off for years at CAL, sometimes interrupted for extended periods of time when she made trips back home to Senegal.

Dennis Hoffman: Getting Life Back on Track

GED Graduation Image of Dustin Hoffman at The JPL

Dennis Hoffman’s education was derailed when he quit school to help take care of his teenage sister’s children. Even though he dropped out after failing ninth grade, he never gave up on his dream to continue his education “one day.” That day finally came when Dennis enrolled in GED studies through LEAP—Library Enhanced Access Program—at the library’s Center for Adult Learning (CAL).

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