GNTC’s Youth Success Academy holds graduation ceremony

Haley Hulsey (left) and Elijah Hurtado smile for a photo before Hurtado took the stage and addressed his fellow graduates during the GNTC Youth Success Academy graduation on Monday.

Close to 40 young adults walked across the stage to receive their GED diploma Monday, Dec. 9, during the Youth Success Academy graduation held at Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s Floyd County Campus.

“I know you didn’t imagine graduating this way, and I am right there with you,” said Elijah Hurtado, YSA graduate and speaker. “Today I am taking a new path, my path, and I am here to say ‘I am good enough.’”

The group of graduates hailed from two GNTC counties where the YSA program is held, the Floyd County Campus and the Walker County Campus. Erick Hopper, Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act youth lead instructor, told the friends and family gathered at the ceremony that the YSA will follow up with the graduates for a year as they enter a new chapter of their life.

“Our goal is to build their careers,” he said before turning to the graduates. “Take your knowledge and build upon it.”

According to Hopper, the program the students participated in is paid for by the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission. The program gives students a different approach to their education.

Hurtado echoed Hopper during his speech. The YSA graduate said he had to drop out of high school in order to find a job and ended up putting off finishing his GED diploma until a cousin pushed him to go through YSA.

The Youth Success Academy offers several programs including GED diploma testing. The academy offers assistance to adults up to the age of 24 with college expenses, with college enrollment and in gaining experience in different career fields.

For more information, contact the FCC YSA at 706-295-6940 and the WCC YSA at 706-764-3783.

Recommended for you