Recent English as a Second Language student returning to IVCC as aid

Natasha Delaney – PHOTO IVCC

OGLESBY – Illinois Valley Community College’s Adult Education department has a new English as a Second Language and Adult Basic Education/High School Equivalency Aid with a familiar face: recent HSE graduate Natasha Delaney.

Delaney, of Spring Valley, was a featured speaker in this year’s virtual Adult Education Honorees Recognition event and received the HSE as well as completing the Integrated Career and Academic Preparation System and Bridge to Careers programs.

“I was a former (Adult Education) student and moved on to get my CNA. While getting that, I realized I liked helping others understand material more than I liked being a CNA,” she explained. “It was a no-brainer to change my major from nursing to teaching.”

She faced some challenges, namely overcoming public speaking and working with her dyslexia, but kept going with a little help.

“Instructor Sandra Woest never let me give up and helped me find what my true calling is, to teach. My husband always supports me in all different adventures,” she said.

“The support that you receive from the Adult Ed staff doesn’t end when you get your GED; they are there to help with all your future educational questions,” she added.

At age 38, being selected to speak for her peers was a challenge. “I was nervous and honored, I have never been great in the spotlight. Being the oldest of five from a poor family, I worked so they could reach their goals.”

She plans to continue her education and become a teacher. Becoming an ESL Aide was a natural fit. “I enjoy helping others follow their dreams.”

Director of Adult Education Sara Escatel is proud to welcome Delaney as part of her staff. “Natasha is an inspiration for others to follow.”

Delaney’s advice for potential HSE or ESL students is, “Remember, our jobs are to help you understand the material. No question is a dumb question if it helps you understand.”