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52 diplomas awarded in hybrid ceremony at Merrymeeting Adult Ed

Merrymeeting Adult Education image #10330

Photos clockwise from top left: Sharrod Mosley, Class of 2020; Bethany Cole, Class of 2020; David Namwira, Class of 2021; College Transitions student Benedita Kukahuba and teacher Kathy Ingmundson; Merrymeeting staff and teachers; a hug for Kiley Tupper from Dawn Wheeler; Alyanalyn Saenz, Class of 2021, with her family; and Kimberly Lowell, Class of 2021, with her mom. Bottom photo includes Margery Whelchel (2021), right, Diego Howard (2021), Kimberly Lowell, Jeff Joy, Jr. (2021), Bethany Cole, Sharrod Mosley, Spinoza Leboundoza (2020), Alyananlyn Saenz, Duane Wilcox (2021), and Ricky Evans (2021)

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TOPSHAM — Merrymeeting Adult Education awarded 52 diplomas on May 25 in a very special hybrid ceremony held both on Zoom and in person under a tent at Mt. Ararat Middle School. These adult learners completed either the High School Equivalency Tests (HiSET, formerly GED) or traditional high school diploma during the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 academic years.

Director Allen Lampert led the celebration, followed by opening remarks from Bob Lucy, interim superintendent of Maine School Administrative District 75. 

Faculty members Jan Crosson, Kathy Ingmundson, Bob Goddard, and RSU 1 site coordinator Dawn Wheeler welcomed Elizabeth Begin, Diego Howard, and Alyanalyn Saenz to the National Adult Education Honor Society. College Transitions student Benedita Kakahuba achieved this distinction, as well. 

Commencement speeches by Sharrod Mosley, David Namwira, and Alyanalyn Saenz were followed by the inaugural presentation of Merrymeeting scholarships. 

In memory of the longtime office administrator who passed away unexpectedly Feb. 2, 2020, the Carolee Tupper Memorial Scholarship was awarded to her daughter Kiley Tupper, a senior at St. Joseph’s College in Standish. Two additional scholarships were presented to David Namwira, who attends Husson University in Bangor, and Benedita Kakahuba, who attends Southern Maine Community College.

Diplomas were presented by Lampert and Wheeler to the following graduates who attended in person. Class of 2020: Joseph Bellevue, Bethany Cole, Jeff Joy, Jr., Sharrod Mosley, and Spinoza Leboundoza (RSU 1). Class of 2021: Richard Evens, Diego Howard, David Namwira (RSU 1), Alyanalyn Saenz, Duane Wilcox, and Margery Whelchel. 

Douce Namwira, Class of 2020, and Nevaeh Pinkham (RSU 1), Serenity Ross and Grady Suhr, Class of 2021, attended the ceremony on a Zoom webinar hosted by Paul Elisha, academic counselor, and his wife – and HiSET proctor – Elsbeth. Forty guests joined them.

Additional diplomas were awarded to Class of 2020 graduates Heather Adams, Zachary Bliar, Sarah Blake, Noelle Brown, Taylor Chubbuck, Jonas Cloukey, Robert Creamer, Alexis Deguio, Antonia DiPietro, Laelin Fischer, Elizabeth Felkey, Richard Griffin, Narcisse Isafamba, Will Kinney, Spencer Letourneau, Emily Mitchell, Robert Mitchell, William Panzino, Pirx Rhodes, Marina Tuefel, Quinn Underwood (RSU 1), Trevor Wallace, Sean Webster, and Syan Wheeler (RSU 1).

Additional Class of 2021 diplomas included Elizabeth Begin, Amanda Bisson, Devon Blodgett, Cody Caron, Alexandra Cook, Matthew Plutchak, Jr., Mark Proctor, Alyssia Russell, Miranda Vining, and Michael Pinkham (RSU 1).

Merrymeeting Adult Education provides opportunities for adult learners to complete a traditional high school diploma, earn a HiSET, prepare for college, train for careers, and develop skills and interests in a variety of personal enrichment classes, everything from canoe paddle making to private pilot ground school.

For more information about Merrymeeting’s academic and enrichment classes, visit merrymeeting.org or call 729-7323.