— The Weatherford College Testing Center will hold its General Educational Development graduation ceremony at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Jerry Durant Auditorium at Weatherford High School on Bethel Road.
This year, more than 600 graduates have earned the right to walk across the stage to receive their diplomas, said Lela Morris, director of the WC Testing Center. Though not all will be able to attend the Sunday-afternoon ceremony, Morris is expecting at least a third of them to come with their families and friends in tow. The public is invited to attend, as well, to share the students’ success.
The GED graduates and guests who do attend the ceremony on Sunday will hear a keynote address by Jason Loyd, former WC fire academy coordinator and presently the training manager, responsible for the Online Recruit Academy at Texas A&M Brayton Fire Training Field in College Station.
Loyd started his career in 1996 as a volunteer firefighter/EMT with Medina Valley in Castroville while also attending San Antonio College. In 1998 he completed the San Antonio College Regional Fire Academy and was offered a job overseas as a contract firefighter on a U.S. military base.
He was stationed in Hungary for two years and then promoted to Bosnia for two years. In Bosnia, he was responsible for training local Bosnians to the Department of Defense firefighter standards for fire fighter I and II, hazardous materials-awareness and operations, airport firefighter, driver/operator-pumper and driver/operator-ARFF, in addition to being a crew chief.
He holds various certifications with the Department of Defense and Texas Commission on Fire Protection, including master fire fighter, aircraft rescue fire fighter, fire officer iv, fire instructor iii, driver/operator-pumper, fire inspector ii, fire investigator and field examiner.
Loyd was awarded the Texas Association of Fire Educators’ George Hughes Instructor of the Year Award for 2003 and was recognized in “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.” In 2004 he was appointed to the Texas Commission on Fire Protection Curriculum and Testing Committee.
“I love GED success stories, and I always try to get a speaker ‘who has been in their shoes,’” said Morris. “Jason is certainly a positive role model for us all. We are excited about hearing from him this year.”
This year, each graduate who attends the ceremony will receive a gift, but one graduate will receive a $500 scholarship to Weatherford College from the college’s foundation.
Morris reminds those who are interested in the GED test to contact the testing center as soon as possible.
“We have done our best to accommodate everyone this year but, unfortunately, the end of the year is near. We will have one more testing day for retests only next week. The new test beginning in January will be totally computer-based. Call the testing center in January for more information.”
The testing center phone number is 817-598-6383.