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The Alaska Literacy Program is helping people get their GED during the pandemic

Obed Vargas says he is doing this for himself and for his family
The Alaska Literacy Program is offering people help to get their GED.
The Alaska Literacy Program is offering people help to get their GED.(KTUU)
Published: Aug. 26, 2021 at 7:47 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The COVID-19 pandemic has left many people without jobs and now many are starting to hit the books to get their GED.

The Alaska Literacy Program was able to expand and provide more services after they received a grant for almost $500,000 from the Alaska Department of Labor.

The program is launching the General Education Development, also known as the GED Preparation Center. This is a way for people to get their high school diplomas.

At the center, adults are provided resources to prepare them for the four-part test.

The center is located just off Debarr Road and Rudakof Circle, here students can have a one-on-one with teachers and take courses in person and online.

“It’s just so meaningful to watch those people achieve those goals, but it’s also soo meaning full for them, and we even soo a lot of older students who come in because they are setting examples for their children,” said Executive Director Lori Pickett with the Alaska Literacy Program.

One of their students is Obed Vargas. He is using the program to get his GED at the age of 48.

“It’s going to open a ton of doors for us, that’s going to change your life, and not just your life, your family’s life as well,” Vargas said.

Vargas said due to the pandemic, he lost his job and his business went downhill making it very hard to support his wife and four kids. He also said when he would look for jobs, many required he has a GED, so that pushed him to start studying.

“If you don’t get educated, you are going to find more obstacles, and you have to work through those obstacles once you get older,” Vargas said.

The Alaska Literacy Program is offering people help to get their GED.
The Alaska Literacy Program is offering people help to get their GED.(Marisol Vargas)

Vargas went on to say it’s never too late to go back to school.

The Alaska Literacy Program also works with the Department of Labor to help many of its students find jobs.

“We want everybody to get the job they want, get on a pathway to the job they want, achieve self-sufficiency,” Pickett said.

This past summer, Pickett said it was their busiest and right now they have almost 200 students signed up.

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