KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Project GRAD college adviser with ADVICE-TN and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission knows what it’s like to be a Project Grad student.

Deidre Hooker is a success story who came back to give back.

Hooker was in Austin-East Magnet High School’s Class of 2011; a good student, featured on the Project GRAD flyer that year.

She has continued her studies, graduating with a Master of Education from Strayer University in 2021, using her knowledge and experience to help current Grad scholars.

“I tell my students, ‘take advantage of your resources, make sure that you are connecting with different people and advocating for yourself and figuring out what it is that you want to do and you make that plan for yourself and you walk the walk,'” Hooker said.

Deidre Hooker has been a college adviser at Austin-East for four years.