Guest post by BEACON for Adult Literacy
BEACON, founded in 1992 by the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia, is celebrating 30 years of service to the greater Prince William Community. Inspired by the Benedictine love of learning, BEACON empowers adults with the skills needed to meet their goals and thrive.
Over the years, we have taught English language, basic literacy, Pre-GED, GED, Nurse Aid Language preparation, Pre-CNA (Certified Nurse Assistant), Citizenship preparation, workforce readiness skills (such as interview/resume coaching), technology skills, U.S. culture, and life skills. Adult learners have attended tutoring, small group, and classroom instruction made possible by incredibly generous volunteers.
Throughout the many years of service, our goal has remained steadfast: BEACON empowers its adult learners to enhance their quality of life through English language and literacy. Leading up to our 30th anniversary, we are sharing 30 student stories.
Student progresses through English classes and becomes U.S. citizen
Claudia, a Salvadoran native, started as a beginner student with BEACON’s online classes during the pandemic. Motivated by a better future for her children, Claudia has worked hard to overcome the language barrier that made supporting her children’s education difficult. BEACON’s classes have helped improve her vocabulary and pronunciation. “English is very important in this country. Now I can help my daughter with her 5th grade homework.”
After attending a BEACON for Adult Literacy educational citizenship workshop, Claudia applied to become a U.S. citizen. Inspired to study on her own, she followed the advice from the workshop and passed the test. The most difficult part was the language. She credits her success to BEACON. “Becoming a citizen is something beautiful; it opens many doors of opportunities. With English and Citizenship, everything is better. It’s gratifying.”
Claudia continues to strive for more. “I feel accomplished; I’ve met goals. My plan is to be a paralegal.”
BEACON is a community partner of the Crimsonbridge Foundation’s English Language Initiatives program, which provides strategic support for organizations seeking to expand successful models, seed innovation, or implement new technology. The Foundation partnered with BEACON to develop their new hybrid programming model so students can choose whether to take classes online or in person. For more student stories, visit https://beaconliteracy.org/about/30years30stories/