In 1929, Helen Krebs Barth boarded a trolley in New Albany, Indiana. She was headed to Louisville, Kentucky to see a speech by Rev. Edgar J. Helms, the Methodist minister who had founded Goodwill in Boston nearly 30 years earlier. Rev. Helms was spreading the message of Goodwill and encouraging people to develop operations in their own struggling communities.
The Excel Center®, a tuition-free high school that provides adults the opportunity to earn a Core 40 diploma, celebrated over 300 graduates at its winter graduation ceremonies on February 14 and 15. Since opening its first location in 2010, The Excel Center has seen consistent growth, including the expansion to 14 locations throughout central and southern Indiana.
DeShawn Minor reflects on his early youth as a difficult time. He didn’t fully understand how his actions impacted those around him, especially his mom and younger siblings. He describes how he had anger issues and “goofed off” a lot at school, resulting in several suspensions and finally, expulsion. He was placed into a group home as a teen and an alternative school in another city.
Ask any instructor or coach at The Excel Center® Shadeland about David Ramirez, and their face will quickly light up.
Correy Marshall met his wife, LaKeisha, after his grandmother stopped into the Goodwill retail store where she was working at the time.“She approached me and said, ‘You look like you would be a good wife for my grandson,’” LaKeisha said.
Amber Copley is a proud high school graduate at the age of 23. She initially dropped out of school when she was a junior in high school, at the age of 16, due to emotional and financial difficulties.
Success stories at Goodwill are more than a stamp of “this story is done.” Instead, they acknowledge that the individual reached their goals, overcame their challenges and launched into their next chapter. Johnny Manson is just such a success story. He demonstrated tremendous growth in education, employment and financial goals.
On December 6, 2018, history was made. The Excel Center®, Goodwill’s high school for adults, hosted their very first Hour of Code at several of its campuses. At the West 34th Street location, around 30 students took time out of their class schedule to learn computer programming— for most of them, it was their first time coding.
Student with Asperger Syndrome and ADHD Excels at Goodwill’s Adult High School
Kamila Gulban is originally from Afghanistan. When she arrived in the United States nearly thirteen years ago, she struggled to find her place in this new world. Her inability to speak English, lack of a driver’s license and limited support system made it difficult to find employment. A family friend of Kamila’s was familiar with Goodwill and shared the mission along with the many resources that Goodwill provides its employees. This immediately caught her attention, and she applied for a job.