Friday, November 13th, 2020
TMI's At-Your-Own-Pace General Education Development (GED) Program's First Graduate
Chris didn’t want to drop out of High School. But with an erratic home life due to a mom addicted to painkillers and a dad constantly traveling to make ends meet, Chris looked at his younger siblings and thought “I have to do something.” So, at 17 he dropped out of high school and started working to help out the family and ensure that his brother and sister completed their education.

Today, Chris is a valued member of the Traffic Management, Inc. family. Starting out as a Traffic Controller, he is now a Traffic Safety Specialist (TSS) based in Sacramento where he ensures that our staff, customers and the public are safe in the work zones we manage.

Thinking back on his career, he says, “There were so many times I was passed over on job opportunities because I didn’t have that piece of paper. It was always in the back of my mind that I should finish.”

Chris had attempted to complete other GED programs in the past, but struggled to fit the work into such a strenuous work-life schedule.

That's when he learned about TMI University’s GED Program. He was blown away by the flexibility the program offered. He could work on the program on his own time, fitting the workload into his busy TSS schedule.

“It was great! So simple to use. You have everything you need in front of you,” Chris says. "It is very flexible, and they give you a lot of time slots to schedule your four required subject tests. You pick the time and day that fits for you. It really worked out nice."

In the first month of activity, 34 employees applied for the TMI University’s GED program. Chris is the first to graduate and was rewarded with a TMI mortarboard, tassel and TMI University diploma holder to hold that all important ‘piece of paper.’

With the resources from the program, Chris dug into the schoolwork, hoping he had learned enough in his life to do well with the program.

"My whole goal was to do this and get it done by the end of the year," Chris explains. "Once I started working on it, I realized why take that much time? When I took the practice tests, there was no need to keep studying so I kept going and going. I was scoring so well, told myself 'Let’s get it done!'"

Chris finished in 5 weeks. Clearly, his school of hard knocks had prepared him well.

“Anyone who is interested should just do it!” Chris said. “It’s so easy to use! If anyone has hesitations have them reach out to me.”

Thinking back to his decision to drop out over 20 years ago, he once again finds himself trying to inspire an impressionable teen: his own daughter. "My daughter struggles with school," Chris, a single father, explains. "I told her that if I can finish school at my age, she can certainly finish at 18!"

Partnering with GEDWorks, TMI's GED Program offers online study material, practice tests, access to academic advisors and course materials in both Spanish and English. At no cost to participants, this finish-at-your-own-pace program is available for any TMI employees at any level who have been with the company for at least 90 days.

TMI wishes good luck to all participants. Are you a TMI Employee who is interested in applying for the program? Talk to your supervisor today or visit http://ged.com/tmi