sandy and betty hugging

Have you ever sealed a deal with a pinky promise?

Meet Betty Zimdars and Sandy Pfund. They met each other in a GED orientation class in July 2017. Betty was sitting all alone at a table, not wanting to talk to anyone else and full of nervous energy. This situation was not to be a permanent one, as Sandy entered the scene. Sandy got to the orientation a little late and quickly sought out Betty. They soon became lifelong friends. Sandy very recently completed all the activities and tests to earn her HSED certificate. Betty is not far behind. And it all started with a pinky promise that the two women would meet this goal together.

I asked them a few questions for this blog:

What made you become good friends?

“We made a pinky promise to each other.  We were in this together.  We would get our HSEDs together.”  There was accountability between the two friends.  The pinky promise was the bond that propelled the friendship.  Both women felt that neither would GED test without the other.

What was your favorite part of the GED process?

Sandy answered right away that working with the Student Success Center staff was her favorite aspect of the GED process.  She felt the staff was so kind and very motivating to the students.

Betty agreed that the staff was super supportive.  And that the staff was helpful in responding to deadlines.

What was your least favorite part of the GED process?

Sandy answered that it was the time commitment, due to a hectic home schedule and a tight deadline.  She was at the Student Success Center day and night.  She was not able to see her kids as much as she wanted to and ,additionally, her husband travelled, making it all very challenging.

Betty didn’t hesitate to give me her answer – —  the math!  However, she then said to me, “Why couldn’t you have been my teacher in high school?”  Awwwwwwww!

Will you maintain your friendship after Betty finishes her HSED?

“Absolutely,” both women said.

What did you learn about life besides learning about reading, writing, and math?

According to Sandy, it was not until recently that she learned how important education was.  “This is a good lesson for my teen-aged son,” she added.  Sandy’s son has told her, “Now you’re smarter than me, Mom!”  How’s that for making a mother’s day!

Betty piped in, “You’re never too old to go for your dreams!”

What would be your advice to others as they pursue their GED/HSED?

Sandy answered that students should not get discouraged.  “The biggest step is coming through the door of the Student Success Center.  The wonderful staff help you take it from there.”

Betty nodded and added that a little sacrifice is worth it.  “It all pays off in the end.”

And it all started with a pinky promise to each other.

For more information on Moraine Park, visit morainepark.edu.

Blog written by Nancy Pusch, student success center instructor.

Written by Shannon Zupke