A true story of survival, GED to PhD illustrates how a young man living in a dysfunctional family overcame family rivalry, verbal abuse, learning problems and substance abuse. Through determination, hope, and faith he completed a PhD. Vernon’s prayer is that this book will provide encouragement, excitement, and hope for those who are struggling with educational disabilities, low self-esteem, lack of motivation, depression, and addictions. From a young age, Vernon was told that he would not amount to much in life. He was never encouraged to succeed in academics and gave up on life. The minute that God entered his life, it was transformed. In this book, readers will experience the different twists and turns on Vernon’s academic and professional journey. This book will show how he was transformed from a loser to a winner, a high school drop-out to a person who completed a PhD, a laborer to a college campus president, a non-rated enlisted member to a Senior Chief Petty Officer, then a commissioned Chief Warrant Officer, from a lost young man to a church leader, elder, and minister and from a lost young married man to a father and grandfather. On your journey though life, do not settle by giving up. Instead, look deep inside yourself and find hope through a personal relationship with God.