Serving up positivity: Restaurant employee works to earn her GED with help from local program

Posted at 9:44 PM, Sep 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-19 23:19:26-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Middle Tennessee program is helping one woman achieve her goals to move up in the hospitality industry.

Laticia Williams, 46, says she dropped out of high school for many reasons including living in poverty, being bullied, and not having enough discipline to finish.

Years later, she's motivating herself to earn her GED through the Begin ANew of Middle Tennessee program.

"I don't let my problems and my things that I go through affect my day, I always make it positive," she said.

Since 2007, the program has empowered individuals to overcome obstacles caused by poverty by providing education, mentoring, and resources.

"They don't criticize you there's no right way, no wrong way. They just behind you no matter what 100 percent," Williams said.

She attends class twice a week from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Nashville First Baptist Church.

The program has five locations in Nashville, Madison, and Franklin. More than 200 volunteers tutor adults in various subjects, computer and job skills, and English.

Executive Director Heather Norvell said the program is free to students.

"We have a lot of our students who are working because they already have families and they need to support their families but they want to better themselves so they can get a better job in the future," Norvell said.

When she's not attending class, Williams works as a hostess at Acme Feed & Seed in Nashville. With her GED, she can combine what she's learned with her love of helping others.

"I love people. When I do finish school it's something I'm looking forward to. Something with hospitality," she said.

To learn more about the Begin Anew program you can visit the website.