(Rome, Georgia) – Alice Towe has been selected as Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) 2015 GOAL Winner and Allison Patnode has been named the college’s 2015 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.

Alice Towe (right) Georgia Northwestern’s 2015 GOAL Winner and Allison Patnode (left) Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year at GNTC.
Alice Towe (right) Georgia Northwestern’s 2015 GOAL Winner and Allison Patnode (left) Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year at GNTC.

The winners were named during the Seven Hills Rotary Club meeting at Coosa Country Club on Tuesday, February 3. The awards were sponsored and presented by the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce, the Seven Hills Rotary Club of Rome, and the GNTC Student Leadership Council.

Christian Harrington of Walker County, who was chosen in December to represent GNTC at the EAGLE Leadership Institute, was also recognized during the meeting. The Leadership Institute recognizes and honors those students who have demonstrated superior achievement in adult education classes and programs.

Towe, GNTC’s GOAL winner, is a Horticulture student at GNTC’s Floyd County Campus and was nominated by her instructor, Shannen Ferry. She was selected from a group of four semi-finalists for her presentation on technical education by a panel of judges representing business, industry, and higher education in Northwest Georgia.

“Alice is not only smart, carrying a GPA of 3.94, but she is also practical, service-oriented, fun, and engaging,” said Ferry. “Her work in Horticulture consumes most of her time when she is not in class.”

Towe received her GED from Georgia Northwestern and is a horticulture work study student, a floral design intern for Bussey’s Florist and Gifts, and a garden sales associate for Home Depot. She has served as a member of Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society and as editor of Old Red Kimono Literary Magazine at Georgia Highlands College.

Towe remains very active in the community by performing volunteer work for numerous organizations including the Road to Recovery Program, American Cancer Society; project manager, Clock Tower Hill Garden Renovation in Rome; volunteer, GNTC Plant Sale; member of the Student Government, Georgia Highlands College; volunteer, Thanksgiving Love Feast; volunteer, Rome Humane Society; and parade judge, Rome Humane Society.

“Technical education offers quality, affordable, and convenient education that not only prepares students for the future, but also provides real-world job skills through hands-on training,” said Towe. “Opportunities, including work study; internship; and community projects gives students a foundation on which to build, as well as a direction in which to aim.”

As the 2015 GOAL Winner for Georgia Northwestern, Towe will move to the regional competition and if she is chosen as a regional winner, she will compete at the state level against winners from the other regions of Georgia. She will receive an all-expense-paid trip to Atlanta. A panel of leaders from business, industry, and government will choose the Technical College System of Georgia’s (TCSG’s) GOAL winner for 2015 and recipient of the GOAL medallion. The 2015 Student of the Year and state GOAL winner will serve as TCSG’s student ambassador during a number of system and college functions throughout the year.

As the grand prize, a new automobile provided by Chevrolet will be awarded to the state GOAL winner.

Allison Patnode, instructor of Dental Assisting on the Gordon County Campus, was selected as GNTC’s 2015 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.

Patnode was chosen for her outstanding presentation about the value of technical education.

“I chose to teach at Georgia Northwestern Technical College to give others an opportunity to learn a skill that they can take into the workforce and provide themselves with a future that no one can take away,” said Patnode.

Patnode has been an instructor at GNTC since 2001. Prior to joining GNTC, she was a dental assistant for Hortman Carney Dental and a gymnastics instructor for Rome-Floyd Parks and Recreation Authority.

Patnode received a diploma in Dental Assisting and an Associate’s of Applied Science in Health from Coosa Valley Technical College in 2007, where she was named most outstanding Dental Assisting student. She received Magna Cum Laude honors when she earned her bachelor’s degree in Organizational Management and Leadership from Reinhart University in 2013. Patnode is certified as a dental assistant, an expanded functions dental assistant, and in dental radiography. She is also a contributor to the Floyd County Baptist Association Free Dental Clinic.

As GNTC’s Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year, Patnode will compete in the regional competition. If chosen as a regional winner, she will compete at the state level in the competition. A panel of leaders from business, industry, and government will choose one instructor to be the 2015 Technical College System of Georgia’s Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year. The winner will receive a $1,000 cash prize.

The Rick Perkins Award winner serves as an ambassador for technical education in Georgia. He or she will make many public appearances throughout the year. The last state winners to represent GNTC were 2013 Rick Perkin’s winner, Troy Peco; 2004 Rick Perkin’s winner, Beverly Padgett; and 1993 GOAL winner, Robin Hood Hutson.

Georgia Northwestern Technical College serves Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Floyd, Gordon, Murray, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield counties in Georgia with campuses located in Floyd, Gordon, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield counties. Approximately 16,000 people benefit from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs, making it the largest college in Northwest Georgia and the fifth largest technical college in Georgia.