DCLC News & Notes
March/April 2021............. In this issue...
  • Nicole Zampitella Overcomes Challenges and Passes GED
  • Support Adult Literacy while Searching or Shopping Online
  • Facts to Share: Adult Education Helps Fill Skill Gaps
DCLC Profile: Nicole Zampitella Earns Her GED and
Creates a Bright Future for Herself
by Sally Sapega

Nicole Zampitella knows exactly where she wants her career path to lead, and thanks to recently getting her GED, she is one step closer to reaching that dream.
It takes grit, determination, and flexibility to earn a GED—qualities that Nicole has developed through the years as she faced daunting challenges.

In high school, Nicole became addicted to selling and doing drugs, starting with the “little stuff” and advancing to heroin. By tenth grade, at the age of 16, she was expelled from school. She had a baby at 18 and got pregnant again four years later. She knew she had to get her life back on track.

“I needed to be in my kids’ lives and set the best example,” she says. images to supporting resources.
She got herself off drugs and over the next few years thought about different career possibilities such as becoming a phlebotomist or working in a hair salon. But she needed a high school diploma or GED to do these things. During that time, she worked three different jobs to make ends meet.

Her recovery counselor knew just the place to help Nicole pursue her GED: the Delaware County Literacy Council.

Nicole was initially scared to return to classes, but she now says that “going to DCLC was the best move I ever made.”

Nicole attended classes while juggling work, school, family, and her volunteer work as director and head coach of cheerleading for a nonprofit. She squeezed in homework every chance she got.

When DCLC transitioned to online classes because of COVID-19, Nicole had passed three GED subject tests and needed only one more to earn her GED. “I saved the worst for last: math!” she says. Nicole found studying math online difficult, but she had the help of a great DCLC teacher in Duane Belgrave,Sr. “He took time to answer questions, to talk with me, and he never made us feel rushed.”

Nicole’s family—two teenage children, her wife, her dad, and her mom—has been with her every step of the way. “Their support is what got me through when I wanted to give up,” declares Nicole.

Now—with 16 years clean under her belt and a career goal of becoming a drug and alcohol counselor—Nicole will next tackle the course to become a certified recovery specialist and then eventually get a degree in social work.

With her GED firmly in hand and sights set on the future, she’s well on her way to helping others find their own way, one day at a time!

The article above has been abridged. Read the full article here.
Support DCLC while Searching or Shopping Online
Most of us have been spending lots and lots of time on the Internet this past year. One way to feel good about all of that screen time is to support Delaware County Literacy Council (DCLC) while you shop or search online.

If you shop at Amazon.com, you can support DCLC by joining the Amazon Smile program and selecting Delaware County Literacy Council as your preferred charitable organization. To enroll, click here.

DCLC receives a small percentage of every purchase you make, as long as you are logged into Amazon Smile when you check out (you'll see the logo in the upper left corner at checkout). Shopping through Amazon Smile does not affect the price you pay or the items available.

Be sure to log onto Amazon with smile.amazon.com each time you shop. You can also find Amazon Smile in “Programs & Features” in the Amazon app on your phone.

Give with Bing allows you to support DCLC without spending any money. It's as simple as enrolling in the program, choosing Delaware County Literacy Council as your cause, and then using bing.com as your search engine.

Because Give with Bing is part of the Microsoft Rewards program, you'll need to have or create a Microsoft login to join. Once enrolled, you'll earn Rewards points that are automatically converted into donations to DCLC every time you search the Internet with Bing. Get started here.

Thank you for supporting DCLC's students in these creative ways!
Fact to Share: Skills Gaps Exist at All Levels
In a 2019 Future Workplace survey of 600 human resource leaders, 64% of those surveyed believed there is a skills gap in their company, up from 52% in 2018. These gaps caused recruiting challenges for 43% of surveyed employers and made 42% of companies less efficient.

Adult education programs like DCLC can prepare students for the world of work by teaching them workplace competencies that are aligned with market demands of business and industry. Also, adult education programs teach study skills that help students become lifelong learners who can adapt to the changing workplace.

Read more about how adult education is essential to business growth and efficiency here. This information is provided by the Coalition on Adult Basic Education (COABE).