Many of the students who come to HopeWorks have limited work history for various reasons. Some students have quit jobs prematurely due to problems with bosses or co-workers. Others have had personal obstacles that interfered with their ability to remain steadily employed.

In HopeWorks’ Personal and Career Development (PCD) classes, we regularly tell our students that after finding a job, they need to stay there! We emphasize the value in building work skills, soft skills and resumes by increasing their longevity on a job.

graduates-groupShotStar Graduates

In 2008, HopeWorks started honoring “Star Graduates” at each graduation ceremony. These special honorees are graduates of PCD classes who have been on their job for at least a year. As of May 2013, we’ve honored more than 40 students.


The purpose of honoring star graduates is two-fold: To recognize that individual for their commitment to their employer, and to inspire and motivate the current graduates to stay on their jobs.

Star graduates are invited on stage during a HopeWorks graduation ceremony as the presenter shares their accomplishments with the audience. They are also given a sterling silver star-shaped keychain with the HopeWorks logo engraved on it. Star graduates are also regularly in our HopeWorks newsletters.

Meet some of our star graduate honorees with exceptional work records!

  • Kathleen Cox — an LPN with Guardian Community Living for 8 years
  • Tamika Farris — a dental assistant with Dr. Jeff Frizzell for 9 years
  • Brenda Coleman — an administrative assistant with Porter Leath for 9 years
  • Joyce Harper — a cook for Macon Rd. Church of Christ Day School 9 years
  • Loice Jones — a parent resource specialist with DHS for 10 years
  • Mark Lewis — an electrician with Ellendale Electric for 10 years
  • Chantal Holmes — a pharmacy technician with Baptist East for 11 years
  • Carolyn Caldwell — a secretary with Memphis City Schools for 12 years