Missouri Honors "Nontraditional" Students and Educators
JEFFERSON CITY - Six students and two educators were honored at Governor's Mansion Wednesday afternoon. They are the 2011 Breaking Traditions state award winners.
The competition defines non-traditional students as people working on fields where the opposite sex make up for more than 75% of the total population in that profession.
Thirty-four-year old Micah Graviett is a nursing student in Moberly Area Community College (MACC). He is the state postsecondary/adult male winner.
Graviett said his kids are proud of him. "They bragged to all their friends. Everyone that would listen, they would talk to them about it," Graviett said.
He is two of the male students in a class of 38.
"I have a child that is 16 years old, and a lot of the girls are not much older than her, so I can adapt to that," Graaviett said.
Stephanie Ley is the only female in her class. She studies welding and metal technology. She was awarded as the state secondary/adult female winner.
She wants to set an example for her 15-year-old daughter, Sydney Ley.
"My oldest daughter has wanted to be an architect, and she is kind of nervous about that whole idea, being a girl. And I thought, well, I'll just show her, " Ley said.
Sydney Ley was thrilled by her mother's award.
"I was just like: 'Wow, mom. I can't believe you did it.' I was bouncing around actually," she said.
Patricia Twaddle, Director of Career and Placement Services at MACC, says more people would choose majors they like regardless of sex traditions.
"We have noticed there's a little upper trend for males go to more the allied health professions, nursing and occupational therapy, and physical therapy assistant, those kind of programs. And there is still a long way to go to try to encourage more females to go for majors that're in the technical areas, " Twaddle said.
Graviet regards this award as a recognition.
"All the hard works, all the nights that I don't sleep, that all the games I missed, anniversaries and everything else I've missed, it's worth it, " he said.
A full list of the winners is on Breaking Traditions Award website.
Each state student winners will receive a scholarship from their own school, and another scholarship from Friends of the Missouri Women's Council.