More than 750 regional high school students and members of the community had a chance to speak with representatives of Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) industrial programs, employers, and former GNTC students about the benefits of learning a skilled trade during Industrial Career Day on Friday, Sept. 7.
The day was held to expose students to the many possibilities for future employment in the skilled workforce.
Kayleen McCabe, host of the cable television program “Rescue Renovation,” was the featured guest speaker for Industrial Career Day. McCabe gave three presentations to student groups throughout the day and also hosted an afternoon session for business and industry partners and members of the community.
“Coming to a facility like this was beyond fantastic because it provides a great education in a structured system,” said McCabe. “It was a wonderful opportunity being able to cheer on, and get the students enthusiastic, about having these hands-on opportunities.”
Students from Adairsville High School, Calhoun High School, Cedartown High School, Christian Heritage High School, Chattooga High School, Coosa High School, Floyd County College and Career Academy, Gordon Central High School, Morris Innovative High School, Murray County High School, Northwest Georgia College and Career Academy, Rockmart High School, Rome High School, Sonoraville High School, Southeast Whitfield High School, Trion High School, and more attended the event.
The activities took place at Industrial Alley on GNTC’s Floyd County Campus (FCC). The alley is located adjacent to Buildings B, C, D and F which contain a majority of the college’s industrial programs. This provided a centralized location with access to most of the industrial labs on the Rome campus. Additional Industrial programs from other GNTC campuses, and other locations on the FCC campus, set up booths in the alley with activities and demonstrations relevant to their programs.
Industrial program directors were on-hand to discuss their programs and provide tours of their labs. There were demonstrations, simulators, and hands-on learning activities for the industrial programs offered by GNTC. Local employers and former students also spoke with participants about the benefits of learning a skilled trade.
GNTC alumnus Ryan Fincher of Cedartown visited the welding lab during Industrial Career Day to speak with students. As a GNTC student, Fincher won the gold medal in the Welding Competition at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in 2017 and became the college’s first ever national champion. Fincher also recently won the bronze medal in the China International Welding Competition 2018 in Beijing, China.
Some of the industrial activities included a small car show hosted by the Auto Collision program, a Dynamometer (DYNO) demonstration presented by the Automotive Technology program, the 1955 DeSoto Fireflite used in The Great Race presented by the Automotive Technology program, a hammer and nail competition hosted by the Construction Management program, a bulldozer simulator presented by the Construction Management program, a tractor-trailer provided by the Commercial Truck Driving program, a welding simulator provided by the Welding and Joining Technology program, and the Precision Machining and Manufacturing Technology program provided a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) and 3D printer demonstration.
Featured GNTC industrial programs included Air Conditioning Technology, Auto Collision Repair, Automotive Technology, Aviation Maintenance Technology, Commercial Truck Driving, Construction Management, Cosmetology, Electrical Systems Technology, Horticulture, Industrial Systems Technology, Instrumentation and Controls, Precision Machining and Manufacturing, and Welding and Joining Technology.
Industries that set up booths and participated in industrial Career Day included C.W. Matthews, Cleveland Electric, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) local union 613, Fox Systems, Marketing Alliance, and Shaw Floors.
As part of the day’s activities, one of the qualifying rounds for the 2018 IDEAL National Championship took place in the electrical lab. The competition was a way to showcase the skills of electrical professionals, students, and apprentices.
Winners with the fastest times from each of the territories holding qualifying events are awarded tool kits and the opportunity to compete in the 2018 IDEAL National Championship. The national competition will be held Dec. 2-3, 2018, at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Florida and over $600,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded.
Last year Scott Carter, director of the Electrical Systems Technology program at GNTC, placed 22nd in the nation during the 2017 IDEAL National Championship competition.
Industrial Career Day was sponsored by Georgia Northwestern, City Electric Supply and the 2018 IDEAL National Championship.
Georgia Northwestern Technical College provides quality workforce education to the citizens of Northwest Georgia. Students have the opportunity to earn an associate degree, diploma, or a certificate in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 16,402 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,750 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 8,652 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start. For more information about GNTC, visit us at www.GNTC.edu. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia and an Equal Opportunity Institution.