Family members work together to graduate together

Shreveport family celebrates 3 graduations
Valencia Jones-Edwards graduated this month, this time with a master's degree from LSU-Shreveport. (Source: KSLA News 12)
Valencia Jones-Edwards graduated this month, this time with a master's degree from LSU-Shreveport. (Source: KSLA News 12)
Haven Jones, 17, graduated this month from Byrd High School. (Source: KSLA News 12)
Haven Jones, 17, graduated this month from Byrd High School. (Source: KSLA News 12)
Charity Edwards, 10, graduated this month from Creswell Elementary School. (Source: KSLA News 12)
Charity Edwards, 10, graduated this month from Creswell Elementary School. (Source: KSLA News 12)

(KSLA) - She wears many hats in her family.

But for the first time, Valencia Jones-Edwards and two of her five children are donning the same type of cap this month.

And in doing so, Jones-Edwards is proving that getting a good education is timeless and that, with a little help from your family, anything can be aced.

And the determined Mom shows why lots of love, motivation and compassion might just be the perfect formula for a good life.

Like many working mothers, Jones-Edwards has her hands full all the time.

"I was always having to budget down to the minute."

But for daughters Haven Jones, 17, and Charity Edwards, 10, it's apparent that their mother is leaving her mark on their lives.

"She'll give the shirt on her back for the person that doesn't have it," Jones said.

"She'll give food for the homeless even though she still needs to go to work while going to school and provide for five kids," Edwards said.

Jones recently graduated from Byrd High School.

Edwards graduated from Creswell Elementary School.

"During their graduation, I gave them the biggest Momma's hugs ever because I was just so proud to see them accomplishing something. And it was even more special because we did it together."

You see, Jones-Edwards also graduated.

This time from LSU-Shreveport with a master's degree.

"I would yell at them about doing homework, but then I also had homework. So we'd sit at the table and do our homework. I'd also sit down and say, 'Scoot over, I've got homework'."

Jones-Edwards easily could have called it quits on getting her master's so she could focus on more time with her family.

She certainly didn't have much of it anyway.

In fact, aside from being in class for four hours during most days during the week, she also held two full-time jobs to keep food on the table.

Her daughters, perhaps, learned their most important life lesson not in the classroom, but at home.

"Education means opportunity. The more education you have, the more doors that are opened for you," Jones-Edwards said. "And that's why I wanted to go back and instill this in my children."

In a home where love resides, memories are created and laughter never ends, success for Jones-Edwards and her daughters is spelled differently.

"You can achieve anything as a family, if you guys are willing to work together," Jones-Edwards said.

Now that she's earned her master's degree, Jones-Edwards will be working as a domestic violence counselor.

Jones will be a freshman nursing student at Northwestern State University.

And Edwards will start middle school at Broadmoor.

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