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Arriving from Africa in April, "Bob" contacted CALC for help with English. He had been a nurse for 18 years and has hopes of pursuing that career when his English fluency and literacy makes it possible. Following assessment at CALC, "Bob" and I began meeting weekly at the local library. We always begin with conversation and learn more about each other and our respective native countries. He's provided me with seeds of the Moringa tree, and I've shared apples from my trees. He's shared stories of his young son and I've shared stories of my young grandchildren.


His initial reserve is disappearing and he has independently obtained his driver's license. Similarly, he sought assessment at Lansing Community College and has enrolled in an English class. Together, we investigated an ESL reading/conversation group at the library and he became a regular participant.


The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a foreboding challenge to his career goal and we spend significant time on reading and listening, comprehension, writing and grammar. As an example, the test has one section where you listen to a lecture and then answer questions. We have devised a routine with "Bob" listening to an audio from the Voice of America website at  home and writes an email to me summarizing the main idea. I evaluate his response and reply to him.


With the perseverance he has displayed so far, I'm certain he will be helping patients and doctors in the near future


Marcella dropped out of high school in ninth grade after giving birth to her son.  She took some GED pre-tests through an adult education school three years ago, but didn't finish the courses and didn't feel confident enough to take the GED exam.  After studying with CALC for a few months, Marcella took the GED exam and passed with high scores.


A few years ago, when Mark came to CALC in early February, he was a construction worker struggling to provide for his pregnant girlfriend and their one-year-old baby.  With the new baby on the way, Mark had tried to obtain higher paying employment, but was turned down by employers when they discovered he didn't have a high school diploma.  He admitted he felt "dumb" and "embarrassed" when he had to tell an employer he hadn't graduated from high school.  Mark decided to work on obtaining his GED.  He studied regularly on CALC's GED interactive computer software and worked on writing and math skills with a member of CALC's staff.  Within just one month, Mark improved dramatically and started the official GED testing.  In late March, Mark passed the GED.



Lydia had passed the first three GED tests easily but struggled with the final math portion of the tests. After repeated attempts, she was matched with our GED math tutor, Guy.  After three months of extensive math tutoring, Lydia re-took the test and passed it, earning her GED credential.  She is now enrolled in a nursing study program at LCC and we are extremely proud of her hard work.


Many students who are enrolled in our GED program state that the subject of math is their biggest hurdle toward earning their certificate. While some math tutors work individually with their students, Guy has created his own curriculum plan that starts with the fundamentals and continues through algebra over a weekly, four month period in a study group. In December, three of his students passed the official GED math test and graduated. A fourth student had a baby and will be taking her test soon.


Guy's students said that his clear, concise instruction and patience helped them to finally understand mathematics. One wished she had Guy while in high school so she could have been successful years ago. Guy's major in business at Wayne State University and work in the state of Michigan mainly in the Community Health Department helped make him the great tutor he is today.

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