Emotion Reigns At Catapult Career Starter Program Luncheon

Lauren Murphy Shares a Moment of Pride and Happiness

As the Director of New Jersey’s Passiac County One Stop Program, Lauren Murphy helps people who are in a variety of predicaments. Quite often, when getting a GED is part of a long-term solution, Murphy refers young adults (ages 18 to 21) to Pedro Tavarez’s Catapult Career Starter Program

Sometimes she does even more.

While recently attending a luncheon for the Catapult Career Starter Program, Murphy shared an intimate moment with the room: a text had arrived that minute from a young woman named Jessica, who had gingerly confessed to Murphy after participating in a 5-week job program that she’d been homeless for the past seven years while being strapped to a mother with severe bi-polar disorder. Her life was a conundrum. Jessica was afraid to abandon her mother as they bounced from shelter to shelter, causing her to drop out of high school; but she also knew that without a degree, she was going nowhere.

Murphy went to work and took the girl under her wing. She helped Jessica garner the strength to temporarily free herself from her mother and find her mother safe, appropriate housing. Then Murphy told her to focus on obtaining her GED, so she could secure consistent work to properly take care of herself and eventually her mother.

A few months had passed and unable to reach the girl, Murphy feared the worst. Then, Jessica’s text message arrived at the perfect moment during the Catapult Career Starter Program luncheon. With tears in her eyes, Murphy read the text to the group:

“Good morning Lauren. Just wanted to text you and share some good news with you. I went for my GED and I passed! Thank God! And things have gotten better living here then they were when I first moved here. Thank you for helping with that too. Your support and encouragement are greatly appreciated. Thanks for believing in me, and hope you have a great day. Take care.”

Catapult Career Starters is designed to help out-of-school youth gain the educational skills and the readiness training they need for success in the workplace, free of charge. Built on Catapult Learning’s proven teaching methods that, for the past 38 years, have helped millions of learners achieve success in school and on the job, Catapult Career Starters offer participants GED/basic Skills tutoring, career readiness classes and counseling, computer literacy skills training, occupational skills training, job placement, and mentoring. Contact Pedro Tavarez at pedro.tavarez@catapultlearning.com for more information.


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