Learning Can Be Challenging and Rewarding

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2018-11-07T11:07:58+00:00 October 24, 2018|Highline Voices, News|
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Learning Can Be Challenging and Rewarding

  • Photo of Shana Friend, Highline Voices

By Shana Friend

Have you ever been afraid of trying something new? Sometimes we learn by choice and other times by necessity.

As I have undertaken learning experiences as an adult, I have become more empathetic with my students. They, in turn, have inspired me by their dedication.

My GED students are more diverse than you might expect. I have 16-year-olds who weren’t a good fit for high school, 40-year-olds who want to move up at work and retirees who want the personal satisfaction of finishing their GED. My students have been blind, deaf, homeless, learning English, recovering from addiction or accidents, and usually very busy.

The diversity of my classroom is mirrored in the diversity of the college as a whole. With more than 70 percent students of color, Highline College is the most diverse higher education institution in the state. Of our 17,000 students each year, one-third are immigrants and refugees.

No matter why they come to my class or what their previous experiences have been, many students are nervous when they step in the door. I can relate to that because I have returned to school myself as an adult. …

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This article was originally published by the Federal Way Mirror on October 3, 2018.

About the Author

Shana Friend teaches GED prep and English as a Second Language classes. She has a master’s degree in adult education and bachelor’s degrees in linguistics and English. She taught English in Canada and China before moving to the United States where she and her husband are raising two sons and several pets.

About Highline Voices

Highline Voices brings a range of diverse perspectives to our community, featuring the expertise of Highline College staff and faculty. Read other articles in the Highline Voices series that began in 2016. All Highline employees are welcome to contribute to the series. Email Tanya Powers or Kari Coglon Cantey for guidelines.