Loretta A. Ragsdell asks:

Lakesha Boyd

“I was able to accomplish my GED because it was something I wouldn’t be able to get because I dropped out of school at a young age and I had my son. It took me four years to get it after I went back, but I did it.”

Paul Shaffer

“I was able to get clean and drug free, and stop selling drugs. I went to rehab programs and I got clean and it feels great to live my life on life terms. It’s been about 10 years now. It feels great to accomplish this because there are a lot of people who are still out there.”

Brenda Chew

“Passing math and graduating high school on time. I didn’t think I could do it. I took a class called statistics and it was really hard. The first semester I had gotten so really bad grades but the second semester I got good grades and passed it with a C and I graduated on time.”

Kenneth Smith

“I was incarcerated at a young age and being incarcerated and seeing guys coming back and forth through the institutions I had doubts that I was even able to come out here and survive by listening to the other inmates talk about how hard it was to compete in an organized society. So here I am, seventeen years later, after being released from a correctional center with a job, and I’ve never had a bad day. I’ve conquered that fear of not being able to come out here without any family to support me, and I’m alright.”

Felisha Slator

“I overcame the fear of what people might think or say about me because I was reborn again with God. I overcame that fear, and it was good that I overcame that fear because it was good for me to open up and express myself to other people about my life, and I’m happy.

Deborah Brooks

“Getting a job. I had to go way out there in the suburbs. I went out there in the rain and got paid. I got on the bus and went out there looking like bumb, but I got the job; in fact, I got three jobs that same day.”