‘Failure is not an option,’ BRCC graduate pushes to get GED then college degree

People of all ages received their degrees at commencements across the Capital City. This includes an accounting graduate leading by example for her four kids.
Published: May. 20, 2022 at 2:58 PM CDT|Updated: May. 20, 2022 at 6:25 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - People of all ages received their degrees Friday, May 20, at commencements across the Capital City. This includes an accounting graduate leading by example for her four kids.

“Failure is not an option,” said Terina Washington, an accounting graduate from Baton Rouge Community College. “I don’t accept I can’t.”

It’s been a long journey for Terina Washington.

“It was hard for me,” said Washington. “There were many nights that I cried. There were many nights that I pushed my family away. There were many events that I missed.”

She got her GED at 32 years old, one year after Hurricane Katrina. The New Orleans native relocated to Florida and then Baton Rouge to be with family where she could get help raising four kids.

“I thought it was imperative that I get my education so I can further advance myself,” said Washington.

So she enrolled at Baton Rouge Community college. Her love for numbers led her to get an accounting degree at 47 years old.

“The anxiety has settled,” said Washington. “I’m super excited. It’s long and overdue.”

Now she’s hoping to lead by example for her family.

“Don’t hesitate,” said Washington. “Nothing is stopping you but yourself. Education is there. It helps you advance in life and career, so just move forward and go get it.”

“It just talks about perseverance that no matter the challenge, no matter the obstacle, you can endure that with the right support system and the belief in yourself,” said Dr. Willie E. Smith, Baton Rouge Community College.

Washington wants to take a break for now, but wants to go further and become a certified public accountant.

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