MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — “Pomp and Circumstance” played, and caps and gowns were worn, at Mobile Metro Jail Thursday during a special commencement ceremony.
Seven inmates received their high school equivalency or GED diplomas after completing the required coursework and passing the national examination. The inmates’ family members were there. Many were emotional.
“For the first time in many of these gentlemen’s lives, they’ve done something productive, something positive,” said Warden Trey Oliver.
The graduates say earning their GED is the first step in turning their lives around.
“There’s no way around this,” said inmate Marcus C. Hansley, III. “This is something you have to have to go forward with life.”
“I quit school in 7th grade,” added inmate Donald Scott.. “It just took me a while to achieve what I achieved today. It just feels great”
After the graduation ceremony, the inmates, wearing their caps and gowns and holding their GED certificates, paraded through the jail chanting, ‘Metro High,’ to the applause of their fellow inmates. Oliver says that is a key component to the graduation event.
“I’ve had several graduates tell me that they’ve never had anyone clap for them until this GED ceremony,” Oliver said.
The warden says the graduates can be an example for other inmates who do not have a high school degree.
In the last 5 years, 220 Metro inmates have received their GED’s. Oliver says only a few have committed other crimes after their release