By Natalie Clark

It’s the middle of May and we are getting closer to summer and the end of school. For four boys at Vera Lloyd, Ramon, Rian, John and Jerry, that means graduating from high school. In the United States, about 50% of youth in the foster care system graduate high school by the time they are 18. For children not living in the foster care system, the graduation rate is much higher–82%.

Vera Lloyd recently hosted a celebration for these boys who reached this major milestone. On our Monticello campus, staff threw a graduation party with cookies, cake and plenty of 2017 graduation decorations. The four young men will soon walk across the stage and accept their diploma from Monticello High School.

With help from our Transition Services Coordinator Tiara Miller, they are ready for their next steps after high school.

  • Ramon wants to move to Michigan, where he has family. He is considering enrolling at the University of Arkansas at Monticello to complete his first year of college. He wants to earn a degree in criminal justice and have a career as a probation officer.
  • Rian is considering the military or UAM.
  • John is working for the City of Monticello this summer and will enroll at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock this fall. He wants to earn a criminal justice degree and aspires to open his own private investigation firm.
  • Jerry plans to move back to northwest Arkansas and work in automotive repair with other family members.

We are excited for what the future has in store for these Vera Lloyd youth!