Photo of Micah Sc ruggs by Louise Jett, Lewis and C lark C ommunity College media specialistThis Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, Sept. 23-29, Lewis and Clark
Community College alumna Micah Scruggs is looking back on her experience with the college
that empowered her in more ways than one.

Scruggs not only earned her GED and associate degree from L&C, but she also benefited from
L&C’s Building Futures YouthBuild program when it helped The Alton Area Habitat for Humanity rehabilitate a house, which became her home.

“I would have never thought that I would run into my instructors from the GED preparation
courses I took at Lewis and Clark in 1999 while filling out an application for a Habitat for Humanity home,” Scruggs said.

The YouthBuild program, in partnership with Madison County Community Development, the City of Alton and Greater Alton Community Development, funded the rehabilitation of the house in 2009.

A total of four different cohorts of YouthBuild students each played a significant role in the home reconstruction project, and Scruggs, along with her husband Shaune and two sons, Mauriyon and Shaune Jr., moved into their new home in July 2011.

“Our home provides an environment where my children can learn, play and be happy,” Scruggs said. “We are truly grateful.”

Since then, the Scruggs have welcomed a new baby to the family, Daniel Michael, who is only 6 weeks old. Scruggs continues to work as a tax preparer and enjoys her flexible schedule, which allows her to spend time with her children.

“Earning my diploma at L&C allowed me to further my education and opened doors for other opportunities,” Scruggs said. “I remain grateful for the enthusiasm and positive support of my mentors at L&C, especially Nancy Johnson and Val Harris.”

Scruggs also appreciates the fact that her experience with L&C’s Adult Education department gave her new skills. These skills prepared her for college and the workforce.

“One of the most important skills I learned in the GED program was how to study and prepare for tests,” Scruggs said. “I also learned what field I wanted to work in. At first, I wanted to study psychology, but I eventually decided to pursue accounting, when I discovered that I enjoy working with numbers.”

Even though Scruggs went on to earn an associate degree, the shining moment of her educational journey remains walking across the stage with her GED diploma.

“It was extremely gratifying,” Scruggs said. “I was so proud, and my family was there to support me. They made a lot of noise and embarrassed me a little, but they were very proud, too. It was empowering.”

Scruggs encourages others to begin their educational journey in L&C’s GED program.

“It is a wonderful program,” Scruggs said. “I am grateful for all the opportunities it has provided me. I want to tell all the students currently enrolled in the program to hang in there. Stay positive and you can do it.”

For more information on L&C’s Adult Education program, visit www.lc.edu/adulted.

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