UK graduates ending 2020 in a positive way

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – How are you closing out this crazy year? Some students at the University of Kentucky are kissing 2020 goodbye by graduating virtually.

The applause will be inside homes for this UK graduation.

“The road is never easy but it’s always worth it,” Vest said.

At 9-years-old Tamara Vest lost her father to cancer.

He was her primary caregiver, and her mother was battling addiction, so vest was placed in a foster home.

Like most foster children, she saw the good and bad that came with it, and that left her determined to help others in similar situations.

“It is possible to come out of that and if you have that drive and that determination and if you see the resources that you may be lacking that is possible to be great things for yourself,” Vest said.

She is graduating from UK with a bachelor’s degree from the college of social work.

Vest recently accepted a position at a private foster care agency, she’ll be balancing working full time and going to graduate school part-time.

As for Benjamin Scales, he’s been waiting for graduation day for nearly 30 years.

“Being away from home for the first time I made a lot of mistakes that younger folks typically make and I was as guilty as the next and my grades suffered to the point where the University asked me to go ahead and take some time off,” Scales said.

And that time off lasted longer than he planned, Scales now has a successful business but after years of feeling disappointed, he finally got his degree online.

After 14 courses and 16 months, and a focus on liberal studies, he’s graduating with a 4.0 GPA.

“It’s never too late. It’s never too late. You can go back tomorrow,” Scales said.

He says he doesn’t need the degree but it’s something he’s always wanted and now he’ll finally have it.

You can watch the virtual ceremony online, HERE.

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