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OJC Press Release ID: 3118

Monday, August 2, 2021

BUENO-HEP/HSE Graduates Seven on July 28


On July 28, a ceremony was held to recognize and celebrate seven students who received their High School Equivalency (HSE) Certificate. Five students and their families were able to attend the event which was held at The Fairway restaurant outside of La Junta. The HSE Certificate is an alternative to earning a High School Diploma and is granted by the Department of Education for the State of Colorado upon successful completion of one of the three testing programs, GED, TASC or HiSET.

The July 2021 BUENO-HEP/HSE graduates were:

• Nemesis Goodman
• Ashley Hauptman
• Monaco Lopez
• Esmeralda Perez-Ochoa
• Christopher Rodriguez
• Alexis Marie Thomas
• Joshua Tait Trujillo

Nathan Howell, Program Coordinator, had nothing but great things to say about this class. He shared that they were incredibly driven and showed great perseverance. He expects great things from this group. Several of the student’s from this year’s class will continue their education at Otero College.

Dr. Tim Alvarez, Otero College President, gave the keynote speech this year. He shared personal stories and implored the students to maintain their confidence saying, “Hope is a better predicter of success than GPA and test scores.” He continued, “When you’re writing the story of your life, don’t let someone else hold the pen.”

The HSE program is open to persons 17 and older who are no longer attending High School. This program offers instruction in the subject and skill areas necessary to help students with job-entry requirements as well as college-prep studies. As of January 2014, the High School Equivalency tests measure skills required by core curriculum standards for high schools and requested by colleges and employers. After passing the HSE tests and upon request, a diploma or certificate is issued by the state.

To register for courses or any additional questions, Nathan Howell can be reached at 719-384-6877 or

Press Release Photo
Otero College’s BUENO-HEP/HSE program graduated seven students in the 2020-2021 academic year. Five students walked at the graduation ceremony on July 28: back (l-r): Ashley Hauptman, Alexis Thomas, Nemisis Goodman and Monaco Lopez. In front is Christopher Rodriguez.