Student Success: Jamal and Jessica

June 2, 2022

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Jamal Meets With Tutor Julia Virtually & He is Achieving His Goals!
Jamal has been working with his tutor, Julia Pensyl since January 2021. They decided to meet virtually due to the Pandemic. Jamal had worked with a tutor previously and stopped. This time, he has demonstrated a great deal of determination to improve his reading skills. Jamal has passed the lessons he had worked on previously, and he is very proud of this accomplishment.
Another goal that Jamal set was to advocate for himself more often. He has been improving this skill by stating when he is tired or needs a break during tutoring. Jamal has advocated for himself by asking his supervisors to schedule an eye appointment to assess his vision. Jamal and Julia discussed the need for a checkup because he was squinting to read. Jamal was able to get new glasses and contacts. He is much more comfortable reading now!
Jamal has also been setting goals for himself to gain more skills for the workplace. He is currently working several days a week at a carwash in the Gambrills area. He assists with the washing, drying, and detailing of cars and trucks. He is looking into finding a class that might help him further improve his skills.
Jessica Earns Her High School Diploma!
In Greek mythology, Sisyphus went through life pushing an immense boulder up a steep hill only for it to roll back each time he got close to the top, forcing him to repeat the task over and over again.
Jessica Whitehead’s ambition to get her high school diploma proved equally daunting — but, unlike Sisyphus, she succeeded.
Building from just two years of classroom education growing up in Louisiana, Jessica faced many obstacles over a four-year span in the pursuit of her diploma, including significant family challenges and health issues.
But Jessica persevered with dogged determination throughout all the hurdles (including working virtually during Covid); her tutors at the Anne Arundel County Literacy Council (AACLC), Ruth Hartcorn and John Wetzel, and her NEDP mentor, Susan Peters, helped and encouraged Jessica throughout the journey.
Congratulations, Jessica, we are so proud of you!!
Featured in the photo above are from left to right, tutor Ruth Hartcorn, high school diploma recipient Jessica Whitehead, and tutor John Wetzel.

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