New national honor society chapter celebrates excellence in Adult Education program
New national honor society chapter celebrates excellence in Adult Education program
Posted on 05/17/2019
The members of the new Adult Education Honors Society

Heather Parton struggled with school as a teenager and never earned her high school diploma.

This year, she is now finishing what she started more than 20 years ago - with honors – to realize a life goal and send a message to her teenage son about the importance of education.

“I feel really humbled and honored,” Parton said minutes after being inducted in the first UCS chapter of the National Adult Education Honor Society.  “It feels amazing. I’m still in shock.”

Parton is among 11 stories that were being celebrated Thursday by the UCS Adult Education program at an inaugural induction ceremony held at the district’s Continuing Education Center.

Interim Director of Community Education CJ Wajeeh said the chapter was initiated to recognize students who embody the tenets of Adult National Honor Society – leadership, a strong work ethic and commitment to education through attendance.

“We are committed to excellence,” she said.

Wajeeh stressed to students during the ceremony the importance of the Utica Community Schools mission to ensure all graduates continue their education after earning a high school diploma.

“Continue to set goals for yourself,” she told the inductees. “Go to trade school, apply to college and remember your future is bright and you can meet any goal that you set out to accomplish."

It is a future embraced by graduate Connisha Brooks, who plans to become a teacher.

“I never want to give up,” she said. “Graduating is one thing – but graduating with honors and being nominated by some of the teachers here is another – it feels awesome.”

In addition to Brooks and Parton, other members of the first Adult Education NHS chapter include Benina Al-Hayom, Iqbal Alhalabi, Reem Babawi, Raed Buttrus, Jacob Christensen, Riham Elias, Michael Graham, Flora Kachi and Rita Zara. 

The UCS Adult Education program provides flexible schedules and support to adults earning a high school diploma or GED.

The program has serviced 436 students this year.

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