SACRAMENTO, Calif. (CBS) — Three generations graduated Wednesday with high school diplomas on the same night.
Taniya Marzetta set a New Year’s resolution to complete a high-school level education. She set out and completed that goal, CBS Sacramento reports.
“I cried and I wanted to leave, but I still did it,” the 36-year-old said while speaking to an auditorium of her fellow graduates.
Marzetta dropped out of high school when she was just 14-years old. She had four children, struggled with addiction and then spent two years in prison.
Everything changed when she watched her daughter Michelle graduate last summer.
“Me seeing her walk the stage and go all the way through it, I told myself I had to,” Marzetta explained. “I never thought I would make it, but I did.”
But Marzetta was not alone in her journey. She shared the experience of completing courses and graduating with her mother and son.
All three received their diplomas from Washington Adult School.
The process began when Marzetta went to Washington Unified School District last year to get copies of her transcripts and she brought her 58-year-old mother Yolanda Bryant along for the ride.
“She was like ‘Nah, I need too many credits,’” Marzetta said.
Bryant never finished high school either, but Marzetta insisted she enroll too.
“Once I got going, I just felt like I was back at school again,” Bryant said. “I got through it with a lot of homework. Dressing up and showing up!”
Marzetta’s son, 19-year-old Bryan Sarente was took part in the adult program.
“What she did in going back to school really motivated me and really pushed me through,” Sarente said.
The football player was struggling at Sac High, and after the death of a friend, graduating seemed unlikely.
But together, Marzetta, Bryant and Sarente took classes and finished.
The family says their dreams wouldn’t have happened without a little faith and little push from Marzetta.