*Credit: Phil Leslie photo

Click to hear KMZU’s Ashley Johnson speak with University of Missouri Extension’s Training Institute trainer and consultant Stacey Blodgett:

Stacey Blodgett

A program through the University of Missouri Extension is providing training to educators who help dropouts seeking their high school equivalency credentials. Trainer Stacey Blodgett says more than three million Americans enter adulthood without a high school diploma.  “It’s important that communities invest in education because, with education, come opportunities for employment,” said Blodgett, “It’s very competitive for industries choosing where they would like to locate their businesses and one of the things they look for is an educated, skilled workforce.  So, even though you and I might have our education, it’s important for us to be passionate about ensuring that all individuals have that same opportunity so that they can be contributing tax payers which helps to build the infrastructure of a community.”

The program works in cooperation with the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and focuses on the specific situations of those they serve.  “Our students have unique needs,” said Blodgett, “A lot of our students are trying to juggle not just going back to school, but families and jobs, as well,” said Blodgett, “This requires our teachers to be patient and understanding with the demands of their students, but also to provide an environment that is challenging and pushes the students to reach their full potential.”

More information and a full list of the adult education sites across the state can be found at DESE’s website.