SCAE graduates take control of their futures
By Shawn P. Sullivan
Sanford News Editor
Posted Jun. 10, 2016 at 12:06 PM
SANFORD - At first Brittany Dixon didn't want to attend Sanford Community Adult Education.
She had given birth to her daughter while a student at Noble High School. She liked Noble High and enjoyed seeing her friends and playing sports there. She tried staying in school and keeping up with her classes, but as a student and a parent she was exhausted all the time. Given the responsibilities of motherhood, Dixon often would be late to class and, once she was there, she'd feel stressed because she missed her daughter.
Dixon's aunt suggested she attend Sanford Community Adult Education (SCAE). That was the last thing she wanted to do. She didn't want to drop out of school, but, once she finished her junior year, that's precisely what she had to do. If she was going to continue her education, SCAE would have to be the route she took. So she enrolled.
And the result?
"Honestly, coming to adult ed was one of the best decisions I could have made," Dixon told her fellow graduates and all of the friends and families during SCAE's commencement ceremony at the Memorial Gym on Wednesday, June 8.
And Dixon got to graduate right on schedule too, as she had been a member of Noble's Class of 2016 when she attended there.
"I am proud of myself and thankful for SCAE for making that possible," she said from the podium on the Memorial Gym's stage.
Next up for Dixon?
"I plan to attend (York County Community College) and major in behavioral health," she said. "I will continue to work throughout the summer and for the rest of my life on the skills I need to keep moving forward in my life."
Nate Lewis also shared his story with fellow graduates and the audience on June 8. He said he loves history but struggled with his own education while a student at Sanford High. As a junior, he dropped out. Academia still called him, however, and he started taking classes at SCAE.
"I was finally able to learn things I just couldn't grasp elsewhere," he said.
Ashley Vance moved to Sanford from Dixfield about a year ago and enrolled at SCAE to earn her high school diploma.
"Here, I've learned many ways to be successful and accomplish things," she told the other graduates and those in the audience. "Getting my high school diploma today means so much to me. A lot of people doubted that I would get it. Well, now I'm standing up here, getting my diploma, just like I told everyone I would. I'm so proud of myself and I'm grateful for the support of my family and friends."
All three students thanked their teachers for making a positive difference in their lives.
As the ceremony began, the graduates all marched into the gym to Elgar's "Pomp & Circumstance" and took their seats in front of the stage. Superintendent of Schools David Theoharides welcomed everyone and honored the graduates for "days, hours, months, years of hard work."
Representing U.S. Sen. Angus King, Bonita Pothier offered three pieces of advice to the graduates: do not fear failure; treat every job you get as the best and only job in the world; and appreciate and value your family and friends.
Yaser Aali and Sahar Hassan and their family led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance. Aali and Hassan are both English as a Second Language students at SCAE and are new U.S. citizens as well.
State Rep. Anne Marie Mastraccio addressed the graduates as the night's keynote speaker. Mastraccio applauded the graduates for the courage it took for them to pursue their education. She also stated that an educated workforce is the most important key to the economy, and she told the graduates that they're key to the community's success.
"Maybe you haven't thought of yourself as community investments, but that's what you are," Mastraccio said.
Mastraccio encouraged the graduates to vote, advised them not to rely solely on Facebook and Twitter for their news, and asked them to advocate for adult education, as some people "do not believe adult education is necessary."
"We are a community that cares for you, and we're rooting for you every step of the way," she said.
SCAE Director Allen Lampert delivered his address to the graduates, telling those gathered that he and his colleagues are in the "change business," transforming unemployment into employment, illiteracy into literacy, hopelessness into hope. "That is what we do," Lampert asserted and noted that the mission is a challenge because changing is hard and requires courage, honesty, willingness and hard work.
"Our students come to SCAE suffering, and you help them to heal," Lampert told SCAE's teachers in the audience.
Lampert encouraged the graduates to do for current or potential SCAE students what was done for them.
"How can you provide hope to others?" he urged them to consider.
During the ceremony, Dixon and Lewis both received $500 scholarships from the Sanford-Springvale Rotary Club and fellow graduates Jacob Rock and Jessica Carter each received $500 scholarships from York County Senior College.
Lampert presented graduate Annabelle Cappello with SCAE's prestigious Outstanding Student Award, given each year to an individual who shows self motivation, potential for achievement, support for others and a recognition that education helps one reach goals.
While all could not attend the ceremony, here are all of the graduates of SCAE's Class of 2016: Tiffany A. Berry; Alicia Boonen; Annabelle Cappello; Jessica Carter; Jen Chick; Isaac Daigle; Brittany Dixon; David Dubois; Kimberly Goodwin; Kassandra Grant; Autin Ham; Katelin Howe; Joseph Lee; Nathaniel Lewis; Owen Marquis; Emma Merusi; Angela Putnam; Tyler Ramsdell; James Reed; Jacob Rock; Austin Sanderson; Sierra Schuchmann; Dustin Stevens; Ashley Vance; Peter Wentworth; and David Whitehead.
Judy Dube, Diane Lawrence, Deborah Lint and Edwina Sprague all earned their Administrative Support Staff Professional and Computer Applications Professional certificates in SCAE's Employment Skills Program. Lawrence, Lint and Sprague earned their Medical Office Support Staff Professional Certificates as part of the program, as well.
Melissa Flores and Samantha Russell both received their certificates for completing SCAE's Maine College Transitions Program.
Annabelle Cappello, Brittany Dixon, Samantha Russell and Sierra Schuchmann all received their certificates for completing SCAE's Families READ Family Literacy Program.
And, as a result of all their hard work, SCAE graduates Cassandra Belmore, Tricia Sanford, Zenab Shaikh and Jeffrey Windom are all now certified nursing assistants.
by Sue Colley
on July 28, 2016
Sanford Community Adult Education is excited to partner with GoDriving.co to offer the CDL Class B driving course for the Fall of 2016. At least one area business in need of drivers is offering a scholarship for the right student! Cost of the course is $2450. The classroom portion of the course can be completed in two week's time - range and road driving is scheduled individually immediately after the classroom time ends - and will make successful students immediately employable as Class B drivers. The average salary for a Class B driver is currently in the $30k to $37 range!
Bring your valid Maine Driver’s License and a commitment to get started on a new, financially rewarding career! There are companies right in Sanford who are seriously looking for commercially licensed drivers. This class includes 42 hours of classroom instruction, 20 hours of range maneuvers and ten hours of on-the-road driving instruction. This is live (not simulated) training with a local, professional training company. Scholarships may be available for the right candidate.
For students who qualify, financial aid is available through the Career Center.
by Sue Colley
on July 28, 2016
According to Enrichment Coordinator Sue Colley, Small Engine Repair is one of SCAE's most requested enrichment courses.
"I've searched for years to find an instructor for small engine repair" she notes. SCAE is very excited to continue offering this course this fall!
And for folks who have taken the first two levels of Small Engine Repair with instructor Eric Ford, there is a new hybrid class just for you! Advanced Small Engines meets on Thursday nights and incorporates both welding and machining. This program will continue in the winter and spring semesters and can lead you to prepare for certifications!
by Sue Colley
on July 28, 2016
Summer 2016 Update [Mt. Desert Island Adult & Community Education]
What a busy year! We had 10 students successfully complete their HiSET program and earn their high school equivalency diploma. Check this out to see the story about one of our grads: https://www.facebook.com/MdiAdultEducation/
This summer we'll be meeting with potential HiSET and College Transition students. Both programs are free.
We'll also be offering online classes through two different sources: UGotClass and Ed2Go. More info to follow this summer!
The next course catalog will come out in late August-early September. The website will be updated by the end of August.
The adult ed office is open on a part-time basis this summer. Call us at 288-4703 and we'll get back to you within a few days.
by Anne Patterson
on July 26, 2016
Ellsworth Adult Education is seeking an evening secretary up to 20 hours per week. Responsibilities include contacting instructors and students via phone and email, meeting and troubleshooting the start of classes at multiple community sites. Assisting with clerical responsibilities including but not limited to data entry, social media management, community outreach. The position requires travel between locations. Monday through Thursday, evening hours. 4-8pm with some flexibility. For further information please contact Ann Sargent, Adult Ed Director, at 664-7110 or by email at email@example.com. Access the application here or can be found on our website at www.ellsworthschools.org. Ellsworth School Department is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
by Annie Sargent
on July 25, 2016
Read more in:
by Jacqueline Weaver, Reporter The Ellsworth American
SULLIVAN — Though she has been in her director’s position less than two years, Ander Thébaud already has achieved recognition in the field of adult education.
Thébaud, who directs the adult education program for Regional School Unit 24, was named Adult Education Director of the Year at the annual conference of the Maine Adult Education Association in June.
“Though she is new to the position, Ander Thébaud could not be more deserving of this award,” according to Laura Bryant, an advisor and math teacher in the department who nominated Thébaud. “Since taking the reins of the post two years ago, she has led our program through significant restructuring with a balance of continuity and fresh ideas.”
Bryant, whose comments were read at the awards ceremony in Dover Foxcroft, said Thébaud’s focus on contextualized learning “helps all of us engage students at a deeper level.”
“She has a wealth of knowledge surrounding adult education and current developments in education in general and always brings that learning into our programs,” Bryant said.
“Ander understands the value of feedback,” Bryant said. “She is in frequent contact with partners at the district and state level as well as in the community. She involves both students and staff in evaluations of programs and uses input to improve outcomes.”
“Students, staff and programs are each strengthened by Ander’s support and leadership,” said Bryant. “She is truly outstanding.”
Thébaud has been director of the RSU’s adult education program since November 2014, but has been with the program since 2010.
She has also served as assistant director of admissions, assistant director of student services and then director of student services at College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor.
Thébaud then decided on a new path, carpentry. She was a carpenter on Mount Desert Island for seven years and, at the same time, was an owner and guide of Acadia Outdoor Guide Service, also on MDI.
After several years, Thébaud returned to academia as director of residential life at George Stevens Academy in Blue Hill, where she designed, administered and assessed the international student residential life program.
She then joined RSU 24 as coordinator of adult education academic programs while serving as a coordinator of the Pathways alternative education program at Sumner Memorial High School.
by Jean Girmscheid
on July 25, 2016
We are excited to be offering five new soft skills modules made possible through a grant from Dollar General of Oakland.
by Shelley McGowan
on July 25, 2016
The fall semester at Lewiston Adult Education will include many partnerships to teach everything from ATV Safety to how to do genealogical research.
Lewiston Public Library Adult Services Librarian Marcela Peres will help to instruct a Family Tree Fundamentals class at the library and show how the collection can provide different types of information to researchers. Mike Mayo, a volunteer instructor for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, will teach ATV Safety and Hunter Safety classes at Central Maine Powersports in Lewiston.
Chef Zack Pratt of Boba Restaurant will show how to make popular Vietnamese dishes including dumplings and pho. Chef Junlong Bunleng of Pepper and Spice Restaurant shall return to teach a couple sections of Thai cuisine and Beth Derenburger will be back to instruct students in Rug Braiding I and Rug Braiding II.
Welding I and Welding II, along with the Certified Nursing Assistant program, will make up some of the classes in Lewiston Adult Education’s workforce training certificate programs.
A Food Truck class taught by Randy Smith of Pinky D’s will top the lineup along with a Wool Drying Basket class at this fall’s Super Saturday. It is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 15.
Academic and college prerequisite classes will be available for members of the community interested in earning their high school diploma or high school equivalency credential. Those interested in refreshing their skills before taking a college class can sign up for the College Transition Program.
Adult education classes can begin in late August, so people can visit www.lewistonadulted.org to sign up or call 207-795-4141 for more information.
by Michael Reagan
on July 22, 2016