From left, inmate Adams, Associate Superintendent Rod Braly, Warden Jerome Price, Principal Allen Baraldi and Chief Deputy Warden (A) John Garza attended the graduation ceremony.

From left, inmate Adams, Associate Superintendent Rod Braly, Warden Jerome Price, Principal Allen Baraldi and Chief Deputy Warden (A) John Garza attended the graduation ceremony.

Kasson Adult School issues 4 degrees, 198 certificates

By Lt. Arnel Bona, AA/Public Information Officer
Deuel Vocational Institution

Two associates degrees and two General Education Degrees along with 198 Career Technical Education certificates were awarded during a recent graduation ceremony issued by Kasson Adult School at Deuel Vocational Institution.

Associates degree recipient Allen Adams, an inmate, opened up the June 12 ceremony with a story.

“A village decided to dig a huge well in search of water. The well did not produce any water. Before the villagers were able to fill in the hole, a mule traveling down the wrong path had fallen into the hole. The villagers tried everything to rescue the mule from the hole to no avail. After much consideration, the villagers decided that it would take too much time and effort to save the mule so they gave up hope. To avoid others from falling in, they immediately started filling in the hole,” he told the gathering.

“The mule’s fate was decided, he would be buried alive. Many villagers with shovels in hand, started to fill in the hole. After some time, one of the villagers noticed the hole was filling, but the mule was rising. He watched closely. As dirt was being shoveled in, the mule would shake it off and stomp the dirt down. Slowly the hole filled and at the top, the mule walked out on his own.”

Inmate Adams likened the story to the lives of many inmates. They fall into this hole called criminal activity and are written off as a loss.

“They scratch and claw but can’t climb out of the hole. Society eventually gives up on them. But with the continued love and support from parents and family members, coupled with education and vocational training and other rehabilitative programs, the inmate can shake off the past, stomp out the negativity, and rise out of that hole,” he said.

Inmate Adams’ mother and father attended the graduation ceremony and were very proud of their son’s accomplishment with receiving an Associates Degree from Coastline Community College.

Several other family members and guests were in attendance.

Special guests were Jerome Price, Warden; John Garza, Chief Deputy Warden (A); Allen Baraldi, Principal; and Rod Braly, Associate Superintendent, Office of Correctional Education.