I have started an adult basic education course to fix my math skills and earn the necessary requirement for applying for the electrician’s apprenticeship program. I feel like I’ll probably have a lot of catching up to do – my math skills have gotten very rusty in the last 20 years. Provided I’m able to focus, though, I feel I’ll pick it up again quickly. I actually liked pre-algebra better than any of the math I’d done before when I was a child. It added an element of critical thinking skills and solving puzzles that I enjoyed.
The new student group was kind of a sad bunch. I was there because I’m getting divorced and need to get back into the workforce. Another man was there because his 9 year old son had been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, and he needed his GED (now HSE) so he could improve his employment and afford to pay for his son’s medical needs. (Side note: I hate this fucking country’s approach to health care.) There was a 22 year old man that had dropped out of high school but now wanted his HSE so he wouldn’t be stuck working in fast food. There was a 17 year old girl that had been getting bullied in the wealthy suburban high school she attended, and she wanted her HSE early so she wouldn’t have to go back. There was a young Indian man that had not been able to take his year 12 examinations in India, and was now stuck obtaining an HSE here in the US. Lastly, there was a young man that was burrowed deep into his winter jacket and wouldn’t even say why he was there.
Monday night was an orientation and the beginning of assessment testing. The orientation wasn’t strictly about the education being offered, it was to establish that the group had access to someone that essentially had the role of life coach and would be able to help with developing skills beyond the math, reading, etc. that was required for an HSE or other certifications. The person taking over this position was being trained that night, and he also works for the state employment agency, though at a different location than the one I use.
He asked which people in the room knew about the state employment agency, and I raised my hand. He then went on to say that depending on what my age was, I’d be working with either C or N. As it happens, I knew who both of those people were, and N works with 16-24 year olds. I’ll accept the accidental compliment! I’d love to think I look significantly younger than 38. I won’t let it go to my head or put too much stock in it, though – the man in question was an older man and vibing gay, so it’s possible he’s just terrible at guessing women’s ages.