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SGTC Adult Education group receives prestigious award

ATLANTA — South Georgia Technical College (SGTC) received the Technical College System of Georgia FY2015 Adult Education Award for having the Highest Postsecondary Transition Percentage in the state. Jan Hobgood, assistant vice president for Adult Education at South Georgia Tech, accepted the award for the college at the TCSG Fall Adult Education Conference awards luncheon recently in Atlanta.
“We are very proud of Jan Hobgood and our adult education group,” said SGTC Acting President Janice Davis. “This is a tremendous honor not only because South Georgia Tech had the highest percentage of adult education/GED students who transitioned into postsecondary education but because of the number of lives that we are touching and improving through this service to our community.”
Wally Summers, vice president of Economic Development at SGTC, who oversees the Adult Education department, thanked Hobgood and all of the adult education instructors who work so diligently to help the students learn.
“Congratulations to Jan Hobgood and her instructors and staff.  This is a dedicated hardworking team that reaps benefits and results,” said Summers.
SGTC has Adult Education/GED sites in Sumter County, Plains, Crisp County, Marion County, Schley County and Webster County.
“This is certainly a high honor and splendid achievement recognition for our local Adult Education Program,” said Hobgood.  “We are currently enrolling students in new classes and interested persons can contact our main office at 229-931-2565 for more information about classes, GED testing, and times of classes at each of our different locations.”
The Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) recognized South Georgia Tech and the other outstanding colleges and the most outstanding GED graduates of the year during the annual Fall Adult Education Conference awards luncheon. Four students secured the state’s three highest awards for GED achievement. Numerous educators, volunteers and academic institutions were also honored during the conference, which featured a keynote address by Randy Trask, president and CEO of the GED Testing Service.
“We applaud the accomplishments of our exceptional graduates, who represent thousands of Georgians who have chosen to transform their lives and pursue their GED diplomas,” said Commissioner Gretchen Corbin. “These outstanding students are a testament to the hard work of our teachers and administrators as we work together to achieve our goal of a fully literate Georgia.”
The GED Graduate Outstanding Achievement Award honors a GED graduate who has made outstanding contributions within their community. This year, the state recognized two community leaders for their remarkable service to Georgia: Sheknita Smith-Davis of Macon and Guillermo Hernandez of Savannah.
Smith-Davis dropped out of high school in the 10th grade after becoming a parent at the age of 15, but made the life-changing decision to pursue a GED, which she achieved at age 22. She later graduated from Mercer University as the first and only Georgian to be selected for a fellowship with the Aspen Institute-Sector Skills Academy. She continues to serve her community in a variety of positions that provide resources for employment opportunities to her fellow Macon citizens, including as a member of the Mayor’s Champion Council and as the Director of the Middle Georgia Regional Commission’s Workforce Development.
Fellow GED Graduate Outstanding Achievement Award winner Guillermo Hernandez obtained his GED diploma in 2011, before transitioning to Savannah Technical College to achieve his barbering diploma two years later. In 2014, he was appointed to the adjunct teaching position within the barbering department at the college, after volunteering to help current students. In addition to his adjunct position, Hernandez works in a barbershop in Pooler. He also participates in a multitude of service projects for his Savannah community, which includes providing free haircuts for students and senior citizens.
The 2015 Fall Adult Education Conference also recognized excellence in adult education for overall achievement, postsecondary transition, citizenship obtainment, testing centers and advocacy awards, among others.
“This gathering is the highlight of the year for Georgia’s adult education community,” said Beverly Smith, TCSG assistant commissioner for adult education. “It’s an honor for us to pay tribute to the hard work and accomplishments of these program directors, instructors, and especially our students. They inspire us all with their passion and commitment.”
The annual conference is a two-day event that brings together nearly 500 adult education and GED testing professionals, practitioners, administrators, supporters, business and community leaders, volunteers and literacy ambassadors from all over Georgia. The event highlights yearly achievements for adult education and provides further scholastic opportunities for attendees with workshops, luncheons and speakers.