Congrats to 2024 GED®, high school completion grads!

GED grad wearing cap & gown and speaking at podium on stageBlack Hawk College recently celebrated the accomplishments of 72 students at the annual GED® and High School Completion Graduation Celebration.

The event recognized Adult Education and Optional Education students from across the college district who completed all GED® or high school completion graduation requirements during the 2023-24 school year.

Fifty-nine students earned their GED® (now called the State of Illinois High School Diploma) and 13 earned their high school diploma.

GED® graduate shared Anthony (Tony) Johnson his story at the ceremony:

“I started in August 2021 and didn’t finish until December of 2023. I would like to give a shout out to Bob, my instructor, and also Josh, my math tutor. A special reason I’m giving a shout out to Josh is because math was my biggest obstacle. He broke it down so I could understand it. Bob and Josh were very patient with me.

“Bob told me that failure is just a simple opportunity to begin again. I had to take the math test four times before I passed. As many times as I went back to the college to take the GED® exam, I kept seeing the word ‘fail,’ it just gave me more motivation to keep going. I kept remembering what Bob had said.

“When I finally passed that, I knew the hardest part was done. I passed everything else the first time. Bob gave me advice to get the hardest part done first, so I kept working on the math. Once that hard part was done, the rest was easy.

“I finished my last GED® test in December. I bought a house recently. Now I’m working on my real estate license.

“The reason I’m sharing my story is that I want to leave an impact on someone who’s obtaining their GED® diploma or any goal in life. As long as you have two legs and faith in yourself, the fight isn’t over. You can always get back up.

“Anyone can do anything. You just have to have a growth mindset. You can do it if you set a goal!”


GED® and high school completion classes at Black Hawk College are offered at no cost to students and are conducted in a variety of locations. New sessions will begin in August.

For more information, call or visit one of these learning sites:

Black Hawk College Outreach Center
301 Avenue of the Cities, East Moline
309-796-8216

Black Hawk College Adult Learning Center
4610 Black Hawk Commons Drive, Rock Island
309-794-1072

Black Hawk College Community Education Center
404 E. Third St., Kewanee
309-854-1875

High Roads Advantage
2004 SE. Third St., Aledo
309-582-8181

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