A little more than two years ago I saw a Facebook ad that changed my life. Although I was a good student with great attendance, I couldn’t graduate from high school because I didn’t pass the math portion of the AIMS test. The Certificate of Completion I received in lieu of a diploma wasn’t enough to support the life and career I wanted.
I knew I couldn’t survive on my two part-time, minimum-wage jobs.
So I was excited to see an ad for a program where I could receive my General Education Development test (GED®). I immediately clicked on the link that connected me with Keake Williams at Jobs for Arizona Graduates (JAG), a United Way partner. Through the ASPIRE program, Keake helps kids like me find our way in education, life and career.
Keake supported me through all the steps to complete and pass the GED® test. She’s been my champion ever since. Another eight weeks later, with her guidance and a ton of hard work, I finished a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) program and landed a new job at an assisted living home in North Phoenix.
One day along my walk from the bus stop to work, I passed a grassy stretch on the Banner Thunderbird Hospital Campus. I remember saying to myself, “I’m going to work here someday!”
I'm proud to say that, today, I am a Patient Care Assistant there and have enjoyed every minute since I started in December 2014. I work with all kinds of patients, and because I have the opportunity to float to different departments, I’ve discovered a passion for becoming a labor and delivery nurse. However, I am open to anything. I love to travel and as a flight nurse, I could work anywhere in the world where medical care is needed.
I am so proud of all that I’ve accomplished. Thanks to JAG and ASPIRE:
I’ve done so much, but I’m ready to keep climbing. My next big goal: continue my education to become a registered nurse.