Lifelong La Grange resident Horace Grady never thought years ago that he would be back in school after having dropped out in his youth, but the opening of the Lenoir Community College La Grange Center opened the opportunity for him to do just that.
One of nine children, Grady said he dropped out of school in the eighth grade so he could support his family. He spent years doing construction work before being hired at Caswell Center in 1970. As he neared retirement in 1999, he began to consider obtaining the education he was denied so many years ago.
He is more than halfway through completion of obtaining his GED having successfully passed the Reading, Science, and Social Studies segments. His hard work has paid off as his instructors recognized him by nominating and inducting him into the National Adult Education Honor Society (NAEHS). The induction ceremony will be held April 24 at LCC in Kinston.
“It is an honor,” Grady said. “I am proud to be nominated because this is something to acknowledge the effort I have put into my education.”
Student eligibility requirements include dependability, cooperative attitude, and excellent work ethic. Both staff and fellow students at LCC’s La Grange Center agree that Grady was the best choice for nominee.
LCC’s La Grange Center Director Misty Moye said that Grady was the top choice for the very first La Grange Center nominee. “Mr. Grady is the kind of man everyone else looks up to,” she said. “He is always willing to try, to learn, and to help others learn. It is an honor to be involved in Mr. Grady’s achievements and successes.”
The National Adult Education Honor Society awards a certificate, lapel pin, and inclusion in a national roster of outstanding adult students. Moye said the roster would be proudly displayed at the La Grange Center. Grady also received a letter of recommendation for his educational endeavors and successes. “Most importantly, he will be asked to serve as an ambassador for Adult Education,” Moye added.
One of Grady’s instructors, Leigh Abel, said that is why she nominated him. “Mr. Grady truly embodies the best of adult learners. He strives for excellence, he is patient, diligent, and who could set a better example for other students?” she said. “He came here as a retiree with an eighth grade education, and look how much he has accomplished!”
Instructor Elizabeth Mayo agrees and added, “If only all students valued education as much as Mr. Grady does!”