Meet Ana, Jovita, and Yuliani

Goodwill Excel Center Graduates

“ …come check out the good work that’s done here. It’s a really good opportunity…to get your high school diploma and have a better future.”

Growing up wasn’t easy for sisters Ana, Jovita, and Yuliani. Their father left when the youngest, Jovita, was just a baby, and their mother did not have stable employment. As a result, the older children were obligated to help raise their younger siblings, even while they started families of their own.

With these heavy responsibilities, not one of the sisters finished high school. Ana wanted to improve her English-language skills and knew that she needed a high school diploma to advance her career but was unsure where to turn. Jovita soon discovered The Goodwill Excel Center and after investigating, found it was far different from what she remembered about high school – it was designed for adults to learn in a supportive environment. “There’s no drama. Everyone is an adult. And, the teachers and Life Coaches are always there for you.”

Jovita soon enrolled, and encouraged her sister Yuliani to join her. Both sisters were able to attend thanks to The Exploration Center, the fully licensed, on-site daycare providing childcare and Pre-K curriculum to children of student-parents at Excel. The sisters then convinced Ana to join them.

Ana was particularly nervous about her English-language skills but The Goodwill Excel Center faculty and staff made her feel comfortable, assuring her she would learn the skills she needed as she attended both ESL and her regular classes. So, Ana enrolled and started term in September 2019, a month after her two other sisters started classes.

One big difference between The Goodwill Excel Center and a traditional high school is the Life Coaches, and that was a big factor for all of the sisters. “Our Life Coaches stay in touch with us all the time,” said Jovita. “If I stay at home, I normally receive a text or call. They want to make sure that we’re okay. And, I know that they trust in us that we can do it and get our diplomas.”

Now, all three sisters are looking forward to finishing school and to their future after they graduate high school. Jovita and Ana have decided to stay with Goodwill and enroll in The Goodwill Career & Technical Academy (GCTA). “I want to study to be a Certified Nursing Assistant, and maybe look into phlebotomy,” said Jovita. Ana is also interested in pursuing healthcare training through the GCTA.

Yuliani helps her husband with his contracting business using her updated skills from Excel. She intends to continue her journey with post-secondary education in accounting, and wants to specialize in tax preparation.

Sisters may not always agree but Ana, Jovita, and Yuliani recommend The Goodwill Excel Center for anyone thinking about going back to school and getting their high school education. “For those that didn’t finish high school,” says Jovita, “…come check out the good work that’s done here. It’s a really good opportunity…to get your high school diploma and have a better future.”