(This week is Adult Education and Family Literacy Week. It is a week to highlight the impact and importance of adult literacy not only on the students but on their families as well. Below is an inspiring story of one adult education student from the Tri-C Aspire program.)
Agustin Torres is a former Aspire (Tri-C GED® preparation class) student who received his Official GED® diploma in 2011. He is enrolled in the Tri-C Mandel Scholars Academy and will graduate in spring 2018. He will transfer to Case Western Reserve in the fall to complete his Bachelor’s degree in Humanities.
His journey to this point in his life started when his probation officer referred him to Tri-C Aspire for GED® Preparation Classes. He attended Mr. Elliot Huff’s (An Aspire instructor) class at U.S. District Courthouse. Although his friends and family told him that education was a waste of time, he continued to work toward his goal. His dedication and efforts paid off because Agustin was the first student to pass the Official GED® test from the U.S. District Court House class. After he passed the Official GED® Test, he worked part time for the Aspire program. Unfortunately, because of family illness, he moved back to Mexico for a year and a half.
When he returned Cleveland, he knew he wanted to accomplish more in life. He contacted Mr. Huff to ask for advice. Mr. Huff told him that without education you will not get far in life and encouraged him enroll at Tri-C. Agustin says that those words affected him and he decided to enroll. He started in the ESL program at Tri-C, and then college courses. After trying different courses and programs, he applied for the Mandel Scholars Academy. He was accepted into the academy and loves it.
Agustin was able to accomplish his goals thanks to wonderful mentors like Mr. Elliot Huff. Additionally, the Tri-C TRIO program ( A program that identifies students who show potential for success and provides encouragement, support, and assistance) helped him very much. His advice to students is “Do not give up. It doesn’t matter if it is million times, but keep trying”.
He plans are continue his studies, write a book and be a voice for the less fortunate.