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IU13 Community Education Blog

Graduate Spotlight - Jennifer Remlinger

Posted by Rebecca Loewenstein-Harting on Jul 6, 2020 10:58:16 AM

Success Stories - Jennifer Remlinger

Jenn began the Family Literacy program in November 2008 and graduated with her High School Equivalency diploma the following May. At that time, Jenn’s daughters were six and four years old, and Jenn was working full-time as a cook at Fort Indiantown, Gap. As a single mom, she had to juggle many responsibilities, and that meant that she could only study late at night after her daughters went to bed. Undeterred, she says that “I knew I had to do this for them, so whenever I would think I couldn’t do this, I would think about them and how I didn’t want to disappoint them.”

Not only did Jenn gain academic knowledge and a diploma, but she also developed self-confidence and skills to become an amazing example for her daughters. She joined the program because she wanted “to show [her] daughters that they need to go after their dreams. [She] wanted to be a role model for [her] girls, and [she] wanted to encourage them to have high hopes for themselves.” Jenn struggled with the program at times because the last grade she had completed before becoming an emancipated minor at 16 years old was 8th grade. Nevertheless, with the faith and encouragement of her mentor, Donna Dencler, and the support of her classmates, Jenn was able to continue and achieve her goal. 

The Family Literacy program was instrumental in showing Jenn and her family the value of setting and achieving educational goals. Today, Jen is a paraeducator for the IU13 in an Early Intervention classroom, a job she says “has brought [her] so much joy and it makes [her] feel as though [she] is making a difference.” Jenn’s daughters are high achievers as well. Her oldest, Destiny, is an all honors student at Cedar Crest High School who takes AP and college in high school classes. She will attend Alvernia University in the fall and hopes to become a neonatal nurse. Faith, her younger daughter, is a sophomore and ranked second in her class last year. She has already taken some AP classes this year and is looking forward to more AP and college in high school classes next year. 

To anyone thinking about starting the Family Literacy program, Jenn says, “JOIN!!! There are so many positive aspects of this program. I found a sense of purpose and importance in my life because of this program. This program put me on the path to becoming the person I wanted to be, not just for myself but for my family. It has made me a better person, student, educator, and mother, and I will always be grateful.” 

Although she completed the program over ten years ago, the effects on Jennifer and her family have been long-lasting. Family Literacy is a comprehensive program that involves both parents and children as life-long learners. Parents participate in an adult education program, either High School Equivalency or English as a Second Language. They also take part in a Parent Education component, where they learn about ways to support their child(ren)’s education and development. Parents and children also have the opportunity to participate in Interactive Literacy Activities, which encourage parents and children to learn together. The goal of Family Literacy is to help parents and children succeed, both inside and outside of school. 

Topics: Adult Education, Family Literacy