Lewis and Clark GED Student Finds Future in Welding

Article by: Louise Jett,
GODFREY – Lewis and Clark Community College is honoring National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week by celebrating student successes. Current welding student and GED graduate Duane Spencer serves as an excellent example of how Adult Education works.

Duane Spencer, of Alton, came to L&C after already earning a GED through another institution, but, unfortunately, the GED Spencer thought he had earned was unaccredited.

“I came to Lewis and Clark, because I needed a change,” Spencer said. “I found out that the GED I had earned previously in 1990 was not accredited, so L&C seemed like a good place to earn an accredited GED.”

Spencer was an outstanding student right from the start according to his instructors.

“Duane’s life represents determination and resiliency,” said Adult Education Transition Coordinator Kim Schweiker. “He has overcome oppression and has persevered to become an outstanding student and an example for all of us. I am incredibly proud of Duane.”

Spencer earned his GED in 2012, but he didn’t stop there. He also earned his Certificate of Completion in Production/Fabrication Welding and Structural Welding in 2014 and plans on graduating with an Associate of Applied Science in Welding Technology in May 2015.

“The best part of the GED to College program was the skills I learned in welding,” Spencer said. “I was taught a lot when it comes to welding, and I believe these skills will take me far.”

Because of his dedication to his education, Spencer was asked to speak to the GED graduates of 2014 at their commencement in June. He encouraged the graduates to go on and further their own educations.

“My GED teachers at L&C believed in me,” Spencer said. “They pushed me in the right direction. I would recommend the GED program to others because of what I have learned. The support I received from my instructors gave me the motivation I needed to succeed.”  

Eventually, Spencer would like to earn his master’s degree and run a successful business to that he can better provide for his family.

For more information on the Adult Education offerings at L&C, visit