After her husband died, Pamela Orange spent the next 12 years caring for her children. School was furthest from her mind when she stumbled on a poster promoting free workforce training while attending a concert with her grandson at a park in Lauderhill.

With her two daughters having flown the nest, Pamela thought the time had come for her to fly as well. The 52-year-old grandmother followed the advice on the poster. She enrolled in a customer service course offered through Broward UP™, which Broward College launched three years ago to improve economic mobility in zip codes with the highest unemployment and the lowest education attainment rates.

After completing the course in just a few weeks, Pamela had official validation of the skills she had been practicing as a supervisor at a local dry cleaner.

“Broward UP gave me the courage to want to do better and go forward,” said Pamela, who went on to complete another Broward UP course in Medical Billing. “It revitalized me. I’m ready to live again.”

With a new outlook, Pamela was eager to share her positive experience with her daughter, Khalah, a second-grade teacher assistant with Broward County Public Schools. Khalah, a 27-year-old single mother, had earned an Associate of Arts at Broward College but had to put any further education on hold – much like her mother had to do -- to support her two infant daughters.

Self-Paced Courses

At first, Khalah balked at the idea of returning to school, figuring she had little time for even online courses. Plus, she had a job. But when she learned that the Broward UP courses are self-paced, providing students with up to three months to complete at their preferred speed, she was all in.

Khalah completed the Medical Assistant course through Broward UP. She says the knowledge she gained will help her cost-effectively renew the CPR certification she earned in high school.

“I liked the course, and I had time for it,” said Khalah. “It was a chance to put another notch in my belt.” You can never have enough education to fall back on.”

Once her children get a little bit older, Khalah plans to return to Broward College to pursue a bachelor’s degree and continue toward a teaching career.

“My heart is with the kids,” she said.

Broward UP instructors, staff, and community partners are invested in your success. Don’t know where to start? They can help you choose the right course or workshop, and get you started on achieving your Unlimited Potential! Learn more about Broward UP.
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