Where are they now? Mount Abraham Union High School – Kelly Bessette, 2008
Mount Abraham Union High School – Kelly Bessette, 2008
Hometown, current residence, age: I grew up in Bristol. I am 28 years old. My current town of residence is Parker, Colorado.
Family: I wouldn’t be where I am today if it was not for my mother Elizabeth Fortune, step-father Hubert Dumas, brother Jacob Forkas, my husband Logan Bessette and, of course, all my in-laws and huge extended family.
What I am up to: I live in Parker, Colorado (south east of Denver). I am a social worker for Suncrest Hospice, where I provide comfort and support to patients and families with end of life. It has always been my passion to help others find peace through human connection during difficult times in their lives.
How I got to where I am now: After graduating high school in 2008, I was accepted into Castleton State College, where I majored in Social Work during my freshman year. Then in 2009-2012 I transferred to Champlain College to continue working towards my Bachelor of Social work. From there, my now husband (boyfriend at the time) Logan Bessette (who graduated in the class 2008) moved to West Virginia for one year, where he received his Master’s Degree in Engineering. After that, we decided to go out west to Colorful Colorado, where we lived in various places in Denver. We got married on May 24, 2014, in the chapel at Norwich University and have been together for a total of nine years.
I also graduated from Walden University (online social work program in Minnesota) in 2015, where I received my Master of Social Work degree. I am currently in process of obtaining my social work license in the state of Colorado. I officially take the exam on July 8. My husband works for Hayward Baker Engineering and has for the past four years. He has officially obtained is engineering license in the state of Colorado. We bought our first home in May 2016, where we happily live with our Bernese mountain dog Albert.
Adults to whom I can attribute my current success: Anne Clark and Fred Koch, both professors at Champlain College. They both inspired me to work hard for what I want in life and as a social worker. I learned a lot of life lessons from both of them. They taught me to never let others influence my own decisions, I am the one that gets to decide my future.
My mother Elizabeth “Betsy” Fortune, has always been my inspiration since the first day she took me into Porter nursing home, where she worked at the time. She shared with me at an early age, the passion and love she has for helping others. Her simple presence, big smile, and caring words. Since then I too carry that passion and love for helping others. My mother, along with several other family members have supported me in following my passion of social work. I work with the elderly population, just as my mother had, and I am so grateful for her gift that she gave me!
How my Vermont roots have influenced who I am today: My Vermont roots have influenced who I am today by showing me how important life is. I take each day as it comes and celebrate with those whom I love and care about. I remember when I was young, my family always told me that “life is too short, enjoy it while it lasts.” I always remember laughing at that. Now, being away from my second home, I have come to realize that life is too short, and it goes much faster than when we were all kids. I appreciate my life and I am grateful every day for my family who have supported me the entire way.
My memories of high school: High points: Graduation day and meeting my high school sweetheart and now husband, Logan Bessette.
Low points: anything that involved math or science, which is still accurate today.
My advice for this year’s crop of graduating seniors: Don’t be afraid of taking risks because the world has so much to offer. I remember how comfortable I was just living at home and not having responsibilities. I have come to learn over a short amount of time that there is so much more to life than being “comfortable.” I encourage the graduating seniors to take risks, to stand tall and take charge of what you believe in, to achieve something that is greater than you, and to live a life that makes you happy.
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