Norwalk Reflector: Aspire: Learn more, earn more

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Aspire: Learn more, earn more

By DONNA STOLL • Mar 29, 2018 at 2:00 PM

When we think of education, typically what comes to mind are the formative years, grades kindergarten through 12.

Often times we forget about our adult students. Students who are 18 or older who may not have graduated from high school or lack adequate English skills or adults who have graduated, but find themselves unemployed and back in the job pool with the need for remediation. Goals differ between adult students and kindergarten through 12th-grade students, as adults are focused on taking care of themselves and their families.

According to the 2011-2015 American Community Survey five-year estimates, Huron County shows a population of 35,364 in the 18-64 years age range. Of those, 634 (1.79 percent) speak English less than well and 3785 (10.70 percent) are without a high-school equivalency. These adult students return to school for many different reasons, such as: To earn their high school equivalency or GED, refresh their skills to enter into post-secondary education or training, learn how to speak, read, and write English, or gain employment skills to get a job or obtain a better job.

What services and resources are available locally to assist these nearly 4500 adults in need?

There are many community agencies who collaborate to provide education and services to make success as an adult very possible. These services and resources are available from your local Aspire programs (ABLE), Ohio Mean Jobs centers, adult career centers, community colleges, four-year colleges and apprenticeships to name, just a few. All allow for continued access to services over a lifetime of learning and career advancement.

The first step to a lifetime of learning and career advancement is to check out the local Aspire program. Aspire, formerly known as ABLE, offers:

• Remediation in reading, language, or math

• High-school equivalency preparation for GED and the newly approved equivalency of HISET and TASC

• English language skills in reading, writing, and comprehension

• Citizenship preparation

• Improving your employment skills

• Help transitioning to further your education

Transitional services ensure students have the skills needed to be successful in their next steps. Students should be aware of their local market industry or in-demand occupations so they can make informed decisions of their education options and career opportunities. Transitional services include this information and allows students to make an independent education plan with specific career goals in mind.

Aspire classes are free and are available to assist adults in the quest for lifelong learning and fulfilling employment opportunities because they allow adults to take control of their individual learning and career goals and assist in mapping out a career pathway.

The Huron County Aspire program is housed at the Norwalk City Schools district’s board of education office, located at 134 Benedict Ave. Stop in or call for program information, 419-660-1825. Get started on your career path today.


Local columnist By Donna Stoll is the Aspire coordinator for EHOVE Career Center and Norwalk City Schools.

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