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HCC
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 21, 2015
 
HCC Human Services students set to graduate this May
 
WELDON, N.C. – Halifax Community College (HCC) Human Services Technology students Dwan Elizabeth Liggins and Jasmine Monique Jones are set to graduate in commencement exercises on May 9 in The Centre at HCC. Both also share a special educational connection. They each earned a General Educational Development (GED)® diploma, now referred to as High School Equivalency, from HCC in 2011. Plus, both are members of Phi Theta Kappa honor society.

Jones, of Roanoke Rapids, explained that she wanted to complete requirements and earn a GED® diploma because she wanted something better for herself. “I knew I could do better than what I was doing at the time,” said Jones.

Liggins, of Weldon, said, “I wanted to do something different with my life.” Having been addicted to drugs for 23 years, she knew her future had to be different than her past.

Both commented that the Literacy Education staff was great to work with and they appreciated each one who assisted them in earning the credential.

After earning their diplomas, both decided to enroll as curriculum students at HCC, although in different programs. Most recently, 31 students who completed high school equivalency requirements enrolled in curriculum programs at HCC.

Jones started out in business administration. After further consideration, she switched majors to human services. “I really wanted to help people in my community,” said Jones. “This program is more like a family…Everyone gets along and Mr. Earl is the best.”

Students in the program affectionately refer to HCC School of Legal and Public Service Chair Michael Earl as “Poppa” Earl and comment on how he is there for his students, supporting them along the way.

Liggins agreed. “He has been like a pop to us…He has been a rock for us,” she noted.

Given Liggins’ drug history, she was attracted to the Human Services Technology program because she felt she could directly help people. “I know what it’s like to live a life of addiction and struggle and try to make a better life and to live down that reputation. I want to help other women like me to get through,” she added. “What kept me and held me together in the program was Poppa Earl.”

After graduation, Jones is looking forward to entering the field of social work. She enjoys working with children. Last year, she lost one of her younger cousins who was only 2-years-old at the time, so Jones is interested in supporting stop-gun-violence efforts in the community as well.

Liggins plans to complete a bachelor’s degree by enrolling in the 2+2 Program at North Carolina Central University in the fall. Eventually, she would like to establish a women’s recovery center to help women fight drug addictions. In addition to finishing up at HCC, she is fighting a personal battle—to win custody of her special needs grandson.

“The Human Services Technology program, along with HCC, helped me to grow and find myself,” said Liggins. “I encourage anyone interested to enroll in the program. It’s going to be hard, but never give up.”

“Halifax Community College understands that we as people sometimes hit painful bumps in our lives. However, at some point, we step back and realize that education is what gives us realistic options in life. The atmosphere provided here at the community college encourages students to visualize themselves in a profession they love and maps out the steps to obtain that goal,” said Earl.

“Jasmine and Dwan are the epitome of perseverance and are a testament to those who did not finish high school, but are just as capable of succeeding. I have definitely witnessed changes in both of them in reference to confidence, body language, and their engaging of people in general. I am so proud of them both,” Earl exclaimed.
 
HST Students
Halifax Community College Human Services Technology students Dwan Elizabeth Liggins, left, and Jasmine Monique Jones
 
 
Halifax Community College's Mission
Halifax Community College strives to meet the diverse needs of our community by providing high-quality, accessible and affordable education and services for a rapidly changing and globally competitive marketplace.
 
Primary Media Contact: Melanie Temple, Director of Public Relations and Marketing, mtemple295@halifaxcc.edu, 252-538-4319

Secondary Media Contact: Dr. Dianne Rhoades, Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Halifax Community College and Executive Director of the Halifax Community College Foundation Inc., dbarnes-rhoades128@halifaxcc.edu, 252-536-7239