TRACY – Gwendolyn Primous, president and founder of the Dome of Hope nonprofit, will deliver the inaugural keynote address at this year’s Delta Charter Online commencement, the New Jerusalem Elementary School District has announced.
Primous’ life story is one of inspiration and perseverance. One of 14 children raised in a southeast Stockton housing project, she dropped out of high school at age 15 when her father died. Her older sister, then a counselor at Franklin High, made her re-enroll and earn her General Education degree. That helped get her a job at the Stockton Police Department, but again she was forced to quit, this time to become the caregiver for her ill mother. When her mother died in 2008, Primous found herself homeless and living out of an automobile.
Despite her plight, Primous eventually enrolled into and completed her associate’s degree at San Joaquin Delta College, then, in 2013 against the odds, her bachelor’s at University of the Pacific. She’s now pursuing a graduate degree at Pacific in educational administration leadership. “Education is very dear to me,” said Primous, “and if my words can encourage or inspire someone, then I am happy!”
“The day I met Gwendolyn in the Fall 2013 I knew I had to get her in front of the Delta students and families,” Jeff Tilton, superintendent of Delta Charter Schools, said in a statement. “It is just too bad it took this long to get her here! Her background, from where she came, where she is now, and where she is heading is such an amazing story of resiliency and perseverance.”
The graduation ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. May 30 in the Teranishi Event Center on the New Jerusalem Elementary School District grounds, 31400 S. Koster Road, Tracy.
Delta Charter High School’s sister school, Delta Charter High School, will hold its ceremonies the same day at noon. Its keynote speaker will be San Joaquin County Supervisor Bob Elliott.