“My name is Dawt Si. I grew up in Burma and moved to the United States in 2009 when I was 18 years old. Burma is a very poor country and I could not afford to go to school there. My mother is a teacher and she always encouraged me to learn, but I never learned English. I moved to Denver and lived with family there for two years without knowing any English at all. When people said “hello” to me, I thought that they were calling me by the name “Hello.”
In 2011, my cousin’s brother told me that if I came to Jacksonville I could learn English for free. I tried taking English classes at the college but I could not pass the tests. Then my cousin’s brother told me that I could learn for free at Jacksonville Public Library. I went to the library and talked with Mrs. Tammy Owens. It was hard for us to understand each other, but she helped me get into the English classes and encouraged me always.
I always know that I can do more. When I heard about Career Online High School at the library I was very excited to get my high school diploma. I knew that with my diploma I could go to college, get a better job and have more freedom. Career Online High School made me very happy because I could go to work and then take my classes at the library or at home until late at night. My Career Online High School coaches Mrs. Allanah Taylor and Lindsay Morris always encouraged me, and Mrs. Tammy, Mrs. Margaret and everyone at the library’s Center for Adult Learning told me that I could do it.
I graduated from Career Online High School on September 5 with my high school diploma. Now I am taking writing classes and will be going to Florida State College at Jacksonville to get a degree in Childcare Management. I like working with young children and I teach Sunday school at my church, and hope that I can have my own daycare someday.
Thank you to Jacksonville Public Library and the Center for Adult Learning for helping me learn English, get my high school diploma and learn how to write well so I can get my college degree. I tell all of my friends about the library and how they can learn English and get their diploma because I know how important it is. The library makes me very happy and I know that it can help a lot of people get out of poverty and have good careers. Thank you.”