PATH Shining Star Earns High School Diploma

Port Huron Career Center

Starlette Bankston, or Star, as she is fondly called by staff, was referred to the Partnership, Accountability, Training and Hope (PATH) Program in 2015. It was then that her case manager soon learned that Star’s greatest barriers was not having a high school diploma. At that time, high school completion was not an activity that could be counted towards meeting PATH participation requirements. Initially, Star spent time in the community service activity gaining job skills and adding valuable work experience to her résumé. It was later in the year that program requirements were revised and staff shared the great news. Participation in high school completion could be counted as a PATH activity.

Star quickly enrolled in the Adult Education classes at the Harrison Center in Port Huron. She was very diligent about attending classes and celebrated with staff each success of completing another credit.

Star’s schooling was interrupted when she faced a family crisis and the loss of her son. Harrison enter staff and the PATH Case Managers believed so much in Star that they knew, if she was supported through this tragedy, she would be successful in meeting her educational goal. Star credits the staff from PATH and the Harrison Center for standing by her, but also realizes that without her own strength, she would not have succeeded. Star completed the requirements for a high school diploma from Port Huron Schools in May of 2017.

In addition to celebrating graduation with her daughter, Star recently started new employment with Division Maintenance. The full-time employment qualified her for a PATH Transitional Support Service payment to assist with initial job-related expenses.

The PATH staff is proud of Star’s accomplishments and feel she is a great example of what hope with hard work can bring.

By Kathryn Shaffer