Student Success Stories - Meet Vida

Life circumstances may have interrupted Vida’s journey through school while she was younger, but our proud GED student never lost sight of her dreams. Vida lost her father before she was born and was raised by her grandmother. Vida was seven years old when her grandmother took her to register for school.

When Vida was growing up, women were not encouraged to pursue an education as they were expected to marry and become a housewife. School was for men to study, earn a diploma, and to find a good job. Eventually, pressure from society and her family caught up to her and she dropped out of school. Vida felt she had no other option than to take a chance and move away.

Vida’s life thus took a new turn. She came to the United States from her native Ghana in 1975. Vida worked hard for years in the hotel industry, taking care of herself and her daughter. Like many others in hospitality, Vida lost her job due to the pandemic. Not one to let challenging times stop her, this setback opened another chapter in Vida’s life.

Next stop for Vida was the Carlos Rosario School. Last summer, she dared to start tackling a long-held dream – obtaining a high school diploma. Her beloved daughter encouraged and convinced her to join the School. Hungry for more and yearning to fulfill her dreams, Vida did not hesitate to jump at this new opportunity. Before the pandemic, Vida had taken some classes at the School to prepare but with a newfound motivation, decided to sign-up, even when some thought she might be too old.

In addition to the GED program, and to the delight and encouragement of her daughter, Vida also signed up for computer classes. Her daughter who graduated with a master’s degree from the University of Chicago moved back to DC due to the pandemic to live with her mother. “She is more than a teacher for me. She is everything for me. She helps me with some computer skills at home” Vida said.

At the Carlos Rosario School, Vida found teachers and staff dedicated to helping students. “Here [at the Carlos Rosario School], you can get everything you want. It is a place where people who have been forgotten in their societies, who are desperate for their future can find hope, education, and can thrive,” said Vida.

Taking advantage of the opportunities offered by our School, Vida is aiming higher. Once she has her GED in hand, Vida’s goal is to become a teacher. What kind of teacher you ask? Vida would like to teach beginners computer classes. That is not all. Vida aims even higher – she plans to pursue her studies until she earns her master’s degree. “I want to be a proud grandmother who went back to school and was able to get her masters. I hope I will make it,” she said. Her perseverance and ability to push forward through adversity certainly will help her make her dreams come true!

When asked if age or gender should be a barrier for some to return to school Vida vehemently refutes this way of seeing things, “education is not only for men, but for everyone. If you want to thrive in your life, education is very important.”

Without a doubt, Vida is a model – for women, for mothers, and for immigrants in U.S. who are fighting every day for their future and hoping for more. Vida proves to us that it is never too late to learn, regardless of age.

It’s never too late to learn new skills at the Carlos Rosario School… click here to get started!