The Adult Basic Education program at OSU Institute of Technology provides a pathway for students to transition from the General Education Development program into college.
This July, the 2019 graduating class recognized a total of 22 graduates who completed and passed their GED tests at OSUIT. Of the total graduates, 19 attended OSUIT’s ABE program and three attended the Adult Education classes at the Muscogee Creek Nation. On average, five students from each graduating class will continue to pursue higher education.
Kylia Byassee graduated from the GED program last year and is now attending OSUIT in pursuit of an Associate in Science in Business.
“The A.S. in Business is pretty versatile, it seemed like a good program to start and grow with,” said Byassee. “I plan on taking this year to figure out exactly what is it I want to do.”
Byassee said the GED program at OSUIT is set up to ensure all students succeed as long as you put forth the work.
“I was nervous entering the GED program at first, but Mrs. Fran was so encouraging and made it seem less scary,” said Byassee. “She really believes in each and every one of her students.”
“As a university, our job is to educate and/or provide training to help create stable employment,” said Fran Colombin, adult basic education director and instructor at OSUIT. “Life happens and these students need a second chance. For reasons known only to them, they were unable to graduate. We cannot turn our backs on them, we need to provide them with an option so they can become successful in life and have gainful employment to support their families.”
The ABE classes are offered to all adult learners at no cost through OSUIT’s Workforce and Economic Development department. With an option of day or evening classes and several satellite locations, they are designed to be self-paced with some students graduating in as little as three weeks and others who may take up to two years.
Although the classes come at no cost, the test, which is comprised of four sections; Math, Science, Social Studies and Language Arts, costs $34 per test.
Like the higher education programs offered at OSUIT, the GED program, financial aid is available to those who are eligible. All eligible students are enrolled in Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) to help with any costs associated.
Colombin said that if students choose a high demand occupation, WIOA will not only pay for their GED tests, they will also set aside money for college tuition, books, and fees and/or pay for specific types of clothing and tools if a student wants to go directly into the workforce.
“One thing I will say is don't let fear hold you back,” said Byassee. “It does not matter how old you are, you're capable of doing hard things.”
For more information about OSUIT’s ABE classes or GED program, visit the Adult Basic Education Program page on the OSUIT website.