Ravenna – The Adult Basic and Literacy Education Program at Maplewood Career Center recognized GED graduates on Thursday, June 7th at 7 p.m.   The adult GED graduates held their heads high with smiles as they entered the room and the ceremony in their honor began.   Doris Schoning, the Adult Basic and Literacy Education Coordinator and Portage County Literacy Coalition Director, took center stage by welcoming the GED graduates, their families, and friends to the ceremony.   She mentioned thanks to all of her staff, volunteers, and those that partner with the Adult Basic and Literacy Education Program.  Doris Schoning then presented the Outstanding Community Partner Award to the Community Action Council.  David Shea, the Executive Director of the organization, accepted the award.    She then continued introducing special guests in the audience, which included:  Kathleen Chandler, Former State Representative; Kathleen Clyde, State Representative; and Michelle Seckman, the Treasurer of Maplewood Career Center.   

The Superintendent of Maplewood Career Center, Randy Griffith, introduced Special Guest Speaker Kathleen Chandler, our former State Representative.   Kathleen Chandler addressed the GED students and complimented them on their achievements.  Doris Schoning then introduced the student speakers.  Tereasa Ganley, Tawnya Albert, Tina Ferguson, Ray Kestranek, and Carrie Wivell all gave words of support to GED graduates.   As each speaker completed their speech, Doris Schoning presented the ABLE students with a marble paperweight.

Laure Gauntner, the Portage County Literacy Coalition President, presented a special recognition award to Wayne Chappel, Robert Moffett, and Vickie Adelman.   The special night continued as she presented the special achievement award to fellow staff member, Herb Schoning, for his service to the program.  The night of awards continued as Jo Minovhets, Maplewood Career Center’s Director of Adult Education, presented the High Score Award to Fiona Harris.

Doris Schoning took a moment to mention all that our tutors do for The Portage County Literacy Coalition and the Adult Basic and Literacy Education Program.  Every year a volunteer is recognized.  This year Tanya Bzdil was presented with the award.   The anticipation grew as Doris Schoning stood in for Helen Jane Wilson, founder of the Portage County Literacy Coalition and past Coordinator of the ABLE program.  She presented the Helen Jane Wilson and Don M. Wilson Jr. $1,000 scholarship to David Miller and the other scholarship to Fiona Harris.  The Wilson Family is a great source of support for the Portage County Literacy Coalition and we are grateful for all that they do.

After the ceremony, there were decorated cakes, cookies, and punch awaiting the graduates and guests.   These items were donated by the Portage County Retired Teachers Association and the Portage County Literacy Coalition.  Every year they volunteer to congratulate graduates and serve guests attending the ceremony.  We are very thankful for all The Portage County Retired Teachers Association does for our program.

Join the Portage County Literacy Coalition and take your first step towards life-long learning.  Become a volunteer, sign up to take your GED, or take a class to transition into post-secondary education.   For more information, please call (330) 235-0020.