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Ninth Annual Business and Education Summit Puts Eyes On NW Georgia’s Future

Lieutenant Governor, NW Georgia Leaders Discuss Preparing Workforce, Growing Business

 

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“Leading the way in a session on leadership in industry during day two of the Lieutenant Governor’s Ninth Annual Business and Education Summit are, from left, Jeff Lorberbaum, Chairman and CEO of Mohawk Industries; Georgia Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle; and Vance Bell, Chairman and CEO of Shaw Industries Group, Incorporated.”

 

(Calhoun, Georgia) – Georgia Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle is spending his second of two days in Northwest Georgia at Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) Gordon County Campus. With several hundred of Northwest Georgia’s industry and education leaders joining in, Cagle is helping lead the conversation on the region’s future in the Ninth Annual Lieutenant Governor’s Business and Education Summit.

Key decision makers in economic development, community partnerships, and leadership in the region are actively taking part in getting a first-hand look at the current state of Northwest Georgia’s ability to train the future workforce and sustain and grow Georgia business in the future. Cagle, as well as the executives leading area industries, are looking for ways to keep Georgia’s workforce market-ready to handle the ever-changing needs of the economy.

Monday, day one of the summit, was a field day of sorts. Morning tours were led through plants at Shaw Industries in Ringgold, Mohawk Industries in Dalton, and Anheuser-Busch in Cartersville.

 

 

Summit participants spent the afternoon at the Northwest Georgia College and Career Academy in Calhoun. Business and economic leaders discussed the state’s growth and the impact on the communities, the power of apprenticeship programs that international companies in Georgia are utilizing, and the benefit of community relationships in the classroom, as well as innovation and a new way of thinking in teaching the future workforce.

Tuesday, day two of the summit, focused on innovative leadership both in the workplace and the classroom. Leaders of the area’s top industries, as well as the Technical College System of Georgia, GNTC, and the region’s college and career academies, spoke about what’s being done today to help improve Georgia’s 21st century workforce tomorrow.

All six of Northwest Georgia’s College and Career Academies, as well as GNTC, donated time and resources to help make the summit possible. For more information about GNTC, you can call 866.983.4682 (GNTC). For information online, visit the college at GNTC.edu, as well as on their Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, WordPress, and YouTube channels. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and an equal opportunity institute.

Since 1962, Georgia Northwestern Technical College has provided degrees, diplomas, and certificates in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

French Connection Brings Basic Law Enforcement To Forefront

Georgia Northwestern’s Sainton Shares Story Of Police Work In Two Nations

 

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“French Police Nationale officer and GNTC alum Fabrice Sainton, left, poses for a picture in a Basic Law Enforcement classroom on the college’s Gordon County Campus in Calhoun, Georgia. Also shown is Basic Law Enforcement Academy Director Jim Pledger.”

 

(Northwest Georgia) – He’s personally guarded the biggest names on the planet. From actors to royalty, Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) alum Fabrice Sainton truly has worldwide experience in law enforcement. But, after more than 20 years in the business, it’s what he’s learned about his craft through law enforcement education at GNTC that has him giving praise.

 

“I’ve worked in law enforcement with the “Police Nationale” (National Police) in France since 1989. It’s an amazing job,” said Sainton of his service as an armed police escort for his country. “But now, the academy at GNTC is exceptional. Truly exceptional. It helped me learn what I needed to in order to grow in my field. It gave me the background and the reasoning behind what gets done in this profession.”

 

“Fabrice is one of a kind,” said GNTC Basic Law Enforcement (BLE) Academy Director Jim Pledger. “His background in the law really has made me, as an educator, work even harder at doing my job and providing what’s necessary to my recruits.” The BLE Academy begins a new class of recruits twice a year at the Gordon County Campus of GNTC in Calhoun, Georgia.

 

Going to GNTC was a simple choice. “Coming to the U.S., my lifestyle and my income changed greatly,” said Sainton. “But, I didn’t want to miss out on an opportunity like enrolling in the law enforcement academy. It was an eye-opener for me.”

 

Currently, on leave from the French Police Force, Sainton works on the support staff at the Technical College System of Georgia college while working on his educational goals. Earning an associate’s degree in 2013 through GNTC, he anticipates earning his bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Reinhardt University this December. Then, he hopes to enter graduate school at Reinhardt University.

 

“I want to learn all I can while I’m here. There are many differences in law enforcement work between the U.S. and France,” added Sainton. “In France, the only guns that are owned by the public are only for hunting. We take that very serious. We also handle policing differently, in regards to patrolling. Here, a department will send out one officer to patrol an area. In France, you always have a partner with you. It’s just a different country that looks at things differently than we do in the United States.”

 

Sainton, a career officer for more than two decades in France, was first trained to be an armed motorcycle escort. The 48-year-old has guarded everyone from Princess Diana to President Clinton to the King of Spain.

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GNTC alum Fabrice Sainton, left, while on duty with the Police Nationale in France during his service while in-country, before his stateside assignment. This particular detail had him guarding Ray Charles, right, during one of the musician’s trips to France.

“Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tom Cruise, Ray Charles, and other celebrities have been special guests of the country that I would personally guard on many occasions,” added Sainton. “Schwarzenegger still e-mails me. I’ve led many details for royalty from other nations during major events. But, not everything was glamorous. I did lose Ray Charles once.”  When asked if Sainton meant the blind musician from the United States, he simply said, “Oui. Yes.” Apparently, Charles decided to leave his hotel room in the middle of the night and take a cab into town. When he finally returned after sunrise, Sainton met him at his cab and asked, “Mr. Charles, where have you been?” The world renowned singer simply kept walking into the hotel and said, “I just couldn’t sleep at all.”

 

Six years ago, Sainton left his assignment in France to fill an assignment stateside with military personnel in the United States in 2010. “I worked with American soldiers who needed to learn French for overseas assignments,” said Sainton. “Work in many foreign countries required soldiers to know Arabic. However, some of those same countries actually have even deeper roots in French culture. Many of them were originally French territories. So, many people there speak French.”

 

A little more than a year later, Sainton would be asked by his country to move closer to Atlanta to be more accessible to the French Consulate located in Georgia’s capital. “That’s when I moved to Marietta and, ultimately, met my wife,” proudly stated Sainton. “She was helping me find an apartment in Calhoun at the time. My wife always tells me that things happen for a reason. I was the lucky one, for sure.”

 

It was after this move, Sainton, a career National Police Officer for France, made the decision to pursue dual citizenship. In the next few years, Sainton would take GED® courses for a short time (because his equivalent high school diploma would not transfer) and pass the GED® exams, take English as a Second Language courses, graduate from the GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy, and earn an associate’s degree.

 

And, as tough as all that was to do, now Sainton has a tough choice to make this December. “Well, my long-term leave is up with the National Police and I have to return to France to meet with them and decide whether or not I want to stay with the force or move on,” said Sainton. “After going to GNTC’s Law Enforcement Academy, I’m about to earn my bachelor’s degree and pursue more education. Now, I have to look at my age and where I am in life and see what’s best for me.”

 

Sainton has two stepchildren with his wife, Crystal, 19-year-old McKenzie, and 15-year-old Hunter. He also has two older daughters back in France, Lucie is 23 and Justine is 20. “I have a lot of family to consider in my decision,” said Sainton. “I have a brother who lives in New Caledonia, near Australia. And, also, my parents are back in France, of course. It will be a tough decision. Plus, I’m going to be 50 soon. I don’t run like I used to. Maybe it’s time to slow down.”
For more information on the Basic Law Enforcement Academy at GNTC, you can call at 706.378.1735 or send an e-mail to jpledger@gntc.edu. You can also contact the college’s toll-free number at 866.983.4682 (GNTC). For information online, visit them at GNTC.edu, as well as on their Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, WordPress, and YouTube channels. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and an equal opportunity institute.

 

Since 1962, Georgia Northwestern Technical College has provided degrees, diplomas, and certificates in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

GNTC Academy Helping Future Officers Trained, Bonuses To Sign

(Northwest Georgia) – Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) latest Basic Law Enforcement Academy graduates have a chance to see some serious cash. If they start their new career in Northwest Georgia, several agencies are now rewarding properly trained men and women just for signing their name on the dotted line.

 

The City of Dalton, Georgia Police Department is the latest agency to add a cash incentive to new officers just entering the field. It will require a three-year commitment from the new signee, but it’s a perk of the job that many will look forward to. A certified new officer could be eligible for a $4,000 signing bonus.

 

“A sign-on bonus could basically replace the out of pocket expenses the student accrued or pay off any student loans that were necessary to pay tuition,” said GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Director Jim Pledger. “Those who have attended college can all relate to the stress of having to repay college loans. So basically, if the student is hired by an organization offering a sign-on bonus, they get the double benefit of being employed in their chosen field and being college debt free.”

 

Dalton, Georgia police officer Brandon Daugherty is the Recruiting and Community Involvement Officer for his department. “This is a Tuition Reimbursement Program to attract pre-service candidates to our agency,” said Daugherty. “Anyone who paid their way through the academy and recently graduated may qualify.  This offer is for new graduates that are certified.   It does not apply to certified candidates that are already employed at another agency.”

 

One way to get certified is through an academy like the one at GNTC. “The unique thing about GNTC is that the graduate not only gets their State Law Enforcement Certification, they also earn 42 semester hours that are transferable to our Criminal Justice program,” said Pledger. “Upon graduation, they are immediately employable and are more than half way to an associate’s degree in the field. Many agencies offer pay incentives for education, too.”

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“One of the latest groups of Georgia Northwestern Technical College Basic Law Enforcement Academy graduates pose for a picture. The program lasts approximately six months. Successful completion leads to a state certification and earns credit hours towards a Criminal Justice degree.”

Currently, Dalton, Georgia, the county seat of Whitfield County, Georgia, has more than 33,000 residents. Nearly 90 officers are currently on the force in the Northwest Georgia town. Law enforcement agencies will often hire a candidate and then send them to a state training facility for certification.

 

“If a new hire isn’t able to earn certification, the person may lose their job,” said Pledger. “Economics are starting to change this process because it is so expensive for the agency. Plus, if the student is not happy with the job and wishes to leave, the new officer may have to reimburse the agency for their training.”

 

If someone enrolls in the GNTC Law Enforcement Program, they take part in a six-month training that leads to state certification without the risk of jeopardizing a new job. “A technical college academy combines the State of Georgia law enforcement curriculum with the academics associated with Criminal Justice,” added Pledger. “And now, students are spending more time in high risk areas in order to develop critical thinking skills needed to make solid decisions in today’s tense climate.”

 

For more information on Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s Basic Law Enforcement Academy, contact their main office at 706-378-1728. For information online, visit the college at GNTC.edu, as well as on their Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, WordPress, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube channels. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and an equal opportunity institute.

 

Since 1962, Georgia Northwestern Technical College has provided degrees, diplomas, and certificates in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

GNTC Law Enforcement Academy Graduation Held Thursday, July 15

 

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Graduates of Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201601 are: Back row (from left to right) Laura F. Williamson, Matthew T. Touhy, Philip M. Parker, and Charles K. Humphrey. Front Row (from left to right) Thomas S. Gray, Caleb A. Chambers, Preston L. Barfield, and Ashley L. Bailey.

 

(Calhoun, GA) – Friends, family, and the community gathered at the Conference Center located at Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) Gordon County Campus to honor students graduating from Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201601 on Thursday, July 15.

 

During the ceremony, eight law enforcement officers were recognized in front of a standing room only crowd. Advisory board members, chiefs, sheriffs, community leaders, and fellow law enforcement officers from the Northwest Georgia region and beyond also were in attendance at the ceremony.

 

The proceedings began with Jim Pledger, director of the Law Enforcement Academy at GNTC, welcoming guests and introducing current and former staff from the academy.

 

“Everyone that teaches here has a lot of experience and we pass that along to our students,” said Pledger.

 

The keynote speaker at the ceremony was Sheriff Mitch Ralston of the Gordon County Sheriff’s Office.

 

Ralston became Sheriff in 2009 and his law enforcement career spans over 27 years. He served on the Georgia State Patrol for 18 years which included serving on the SWAT team, DUI taskforce, and a number of other different assignments.

 

He is a member of the National Sheriffs’ Association, National Constitutional Officers’ Association, Young Farmers Association, Red Carpet Cattlemen’s Association, Coosawattee Masonic Lodge #306 F&AM, and Yaarab Shriners.

 

Ralston reminded the graduates that the image they portray is a very important component of law enforcement.

 

“Your integrity is your career,” said Ralston. “The way you conduct yourself on and off duty is a reflection of your department.”

 

Laura F. Williamson was the student speaker for the ceremony.

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Laura F. Williamson, student speaker for the graduation ceremony of Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201601, presents Jim Pledger, director of the Law Enforcement Academy at GNTC, with a plaque from the class.

Caleb A. Chambers was presented with the “Top Gun” award for excellence in marksmanship and Preston L. Barnfield received the Academic (Honor Graduate) Award for having the highest grade point average.

 

Graduates of GNTC’s Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201501 are: Graduates of GNTC’s Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201601 are Ashley L. Bailey, Preston L. Barfield, Caleb A. Chambers, Thomas S. Gray, Charles K. Humphrey, Philip M. Parker, Matthew T. Touhy, and Laura F. Williamson.

 

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, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

GNTC Law Enforcement Academy Graduation

im Pledger (right), director of GNTC’s Law Enforcement Academy, presents Joshua P. Cole (left) with the “Top Gun” award for excellence in marksmanship.
Jim Pledger (right), director of GNTC’s Law Enforcement Academy, presents Joshua P. Cole (left) with the “Top Gun” award for excellence in marksmanship.

(Calhoun, GA) – On Thursday, July 9, friends and family gathered at the Conference Center located at Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) Gordon County Campus to honor the students graduating from the Law Enforcement Academy.

During the ceremony, 11 law enforcement officers graduated from the program. Advisory board members, chiefs, sheriffs, and fellow law enforcement officers from the Northwest Georgia region and beyond also were in attendance at the ceremony.

The proceedings began with Jim Pledger, director of the Law enforcement Academy at GNTC, welcoming guests and praising students for their achievement.

“So many people in the audience have been a part of this program,” said Pledger. “There are a lot of people here that come and help us as instructors and there are a lot of here in uniform that were sitting on this stage getting ready to graduate a few years ago.”

The keynote speaker at the ceremony was Lt. Jeff W. Vanaman of the Brookhaven Police Department. Vanaman served as a coordinator for GNTC’s Basic Law Enforcement Academy from June 2010 to June 2013.

Vanaman began his law enforcement career with the College Park Police Department where he served as a field training officer, member of the Honor Guard, task force officer assigned to the DEA Atlanta Airport Group, general instructor, firearms instructor, range master, sniper team leader, assistant SWAT team commander, and patrol division sergeant.

He has earned intermediate and advanced law enforcement certifications as well as other certifications as a general instructor, firearms instructor, and emergency driving instructor.

Vanaman reminded the graduates to never forget that their main priority is public service.

“The root and the core of this job is serving people,” said Vanaman. “What you do matters and you may never know what impact you have on people.”

Jordan B. DeJesus was the student speaker for the ceremony. Dejesus said that when he and the other recruits started it seemed overwhelming at first, but in the end everything made sense and came together.

“It’s a learning experience the whole way through,” said DeJesus. “I can’t think of a single day that we didn’t take something with us when we went home.”

Joshua P. Cole was presented with the “Top Gun” award for excellence in marksmanship and Jake D. Holley received the Academic (Honor Graduate) Award for having the highest grade point average.

Graduates of GNTC’s Basic Law Enforcement Training Class #201501 are:

Joshua P. Cole, Jordan B. DeJesus, Marissa E. Elrod, Jake D. Holley, Christopher B. Johnson, Martin A. Meza, William J. Pledger, Hunter M. J. Quarles, Jose M. Meza Sandoval, Christopher K. Wilkins, and Jason H. Winkles.

Since 1962, Georgia Northwestern Technical College has been instrumental in providing quality workforce education to the citizens of Northwest Georgia. The mission of Georgia Northwestern Technical College is to provide accessible, high quality technical education and workforce development opportunities.  Serving the nine counties of Catoosa; Chattooga; Dade; Floyd; Gordon; Murray; Polk; Walker; and Whitfield, GNTC has five convenient campus locations in Floyd, Gordon, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield counties. With programs of study in business, health, industrial, and public service available, students have the opportunity to earn an associate’s degree, diploma, or a certificate from GNTC.  This past year, 14,562 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 8,249 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia and the fifth largest technical college in the state of Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 6,313 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

Georgia Northwestern Honors Basic Law Enforcement Graduates

Rome’s Crosby Named Top Gun, Top Graduate

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(Calhoun, Georgia) – Rome, Georgia’s Tyler Crosby received Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) “Top Gun” and top student awards at GNTC’s Basic Law Enforcement Academy graduation ceremony November 20.

GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Director Jim Pledger recognized Crosby as the top student by awarding him the program’s Academic Award. Crosby also received the “Top Gun” Award which recognizes excellence in marksmanship amongst his peers.

Justin Bohannon, Crosby, Amethyst Dunn, Patrick Dupree, Aaron Grant, Alejandro Hernandez, Wesley Holland, Luis Otalora Murcia, and Johnny Peterson were the nine recruits who made it through the duration of the academy’s program held on the Gordon County Campus of GNTC in Calhoun, Georgia.

Rep. Trey Kelly (R-Cedartown), an attorney with the Parker and Lundy Law Firm in Cedartown, Georgia, was the ceremony’s guest speaker. Kelly began his public office service with the Georgia House of Representatives in 2012.

Recruits receive training in everything from criminal investigation to firearms to ethics and liability issues. For more information on the Basic Law Enforcement Academy at GNTC, call (706) 378-1728. You can also e-mail the program’s director at jpledger@gntc.edu.

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. Georgia Northwestern offers classes on-campus or online throughout the year. GNTC 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.

“Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) Basic Law Enforcement honored their most recent class of graduates on November 20. Shown, from left, are GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Administrative Assistant Delores McClellan, GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Director Jim Pledger, Amethyst Dunn, Aaron Grant, Luis Otalora-Murcia, Alejandro Hernandez, Tyler Crosby, John Peterson, Patrick Dupree, Keith Holland, GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Class Coordinator Jonathan Parker, Alex Bohannon, and Calhoun Police Department Detective Sergeant Tom Petty.”
“Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) Basic Law Enforcement honored their most recent class of graduates on November 20. Shown, from left, are GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Administrative Assistant Delores McClellan, GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Director Jim Pledger, Amethyst Dunn, Aaron Grant, Luis Otalora-Murcia, Alejandro Hernandez, Tyler Crosby, John Peterson, Patrick Dupree, Keith Holland, GNTC Basic Law Enforcement Academy Class Coordinator Jonathan Parker, Alex Bohannon, and Calhoun Police Department Detective Sergeant Tom Petty.”

Northwest Georgia Showcases Future To Tomorrow’s Pros

GNTC, 40 Vendors On Hand To Share With High Schoolers

 

“Georgia Northwestern Technical (GNTC) College Welding Instructor Jeremiah Cooper spoke with more than 200 high school students from Catoosa, Dade, and Walker County in the Brooks Center on GNTC’s Walker County Campus Thursday.”
“Georgia Northwestern Technical (GNTC) College Welding Instructor Jeremiah Cooper spoke with more than 200 high school students from Catoosa, Dade, and Walker County in the Brooks Center on GNTC’s Walker County Campus Thursday.”

 

(Northwest Georgia) – More than 200 students and staff from the Catoosa, Dade, and Walker Transition Academy program were on hand at Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) Walker County Campus Thursday. More than 40 vendors were being showcased to tomorrow’s college students so they could get a sneak peek at what’s waiting for them in the career world in Northwest Georgia and beyond.

Colleges and industries alike were on display as high school upperclassmen from across the region got to learn more about life beyond high school, as well as ask questions about their future. With Georgia Northwestern hosting the annual event, instructors from across the college spoke with the students about what programs may fit them best. GNTC offers more than 200 program across five campuses and online throughout the year.

Georgia Northwestern begins its spring semester on-campus and online on January 5, 2015. The deadline to apply for spring classes is November 25. For more information, visit GNTC at www.GNTC.edu. You can also call the college at 866-983-GNTC (4682).

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. Georgia Northwestern offers classes on-campus or online throughout the year. GNTC 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.

Basic Law Enforcement Academy – Your Career Begins Here!

North Georgia Youth Gets Help With Education, Career

If you are 16-to-21 years of age and need a GED so you can start college, there is a way to get everything you’ll need for free!

The Georgia Northwestern Technical College Youth Success Academy (YSA) program is accepting your application and conducting testing July 10-23rd. The next classes start July 29.

If you’ve dropped out of high school and qualify for the program, you can earn your GED and receive other specialized services free of charge. The YSA program will help you further your career training and help you find employment.

For more information, call GNTC’s Youth Success Academy at 706.764.3783.

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