SGTC student, instructor recognized by TCSG

Published 3:30 pm Thursday, April 27, 2017

From Staff Reports

Charles Christmas

ATLANTA — South Georgia Technical College’s 2017 Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership (GOAL) student Christopher McGhee of Cordele and the college’s 2017 Instructor of the Year Charles Christmas were both recognized at the Technical College System of Georgia annual GOAL and Rick Perkins Award banquet in Atlanta recently.
Governor Nathan Deal was the keynote speaker at the Technical College System of Georgia Leadership Conference with TCSG Commissioner Gretchen Corbin. The top students and instructors from each of the 22 technical colleges in Georgia were recognized at a special banquet at the conference. Ashley Rodgers, South Georgia Tech’s 2016 GOAL student who represented the Technical College System of Georgia as the top student in 2016, was also on hand.
Skylar Huggett of Savannah Technical College was selected as the state’s 2017 Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership (GOAL) representative and Ashley Strong-Green of Augusta Technical College received the 2017 Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Instruction.
“Georgia is fortunate to have a strong technical college system that molds a workforce capable of filling the demands of an ever-evolving economy,” said Deal. “Enthusiastic students like Ms. Huggett put forth the hard work and exemplary performance that makes the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) so successful, and devoted instructors such as Ms. Strong-Green guide students on their journey to success. My congratulations and best wishes to the award winners, and I am confident that they will be outstanding ambassadors for the technical college system in the coming year.”
The GOAL program, now in its 46th year, recognizes the most outstanding technical education students at each of the 22 TCSG colleges and the technical division at Bainbridge State College. The Rick Perkins Award, now in its 27th year, highlights excellence in technical instruction. As award winners, Huggett and Strong-Green will make public appearances as ambassadors for technical education during the next year, including meeting with Deal and addressing the Georgia General Assembly.

Each year, selection for the GOAL and Rick Perkins Award begins with the naming of the top technical education student and instructor at each college, as well as the technical division at Bainbridge State College. Regional competitions follow and narrow the field to nine finalists for each award. In April, the nine finalists are interviewed in Atlanta by a panel of judges. At each step, student finalists are scored on their academic accomplishments, leadership qualities, involvement in their local communities and future aspirations. Benchmarks for instructors include teaching experience, innovation in the classroom, leadership and civic involvement.
“The passion that Skylar and Ashley have for technical education shines through, not just in their remarks and in their work, but in their lives,” said TCSG Commissioner Gretchen Corbin. “Their passion is contagious, and each has a remarkable ability to inspire their peers and motivate all of us to greater achievements. There are no better advocates for technical education than our students and our instructors, and that includes not only Skylar and Ashley, but each and every one of our GOAL and Rick Perkins college winners.”
Huggett is a welding and joining technology student from Savannah Technical College whose goal is to weld in a job that contributes to Georgia’s infrastructure. She received the GOAL program’s grand prize: a new, made-in-Georgia 2017 Kia Optima, courtesy of Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia and delivered by Ed Voyles Kia of Chamblee.
Strong-Green, a general education instructor at Augusta Technical College, is the winner of the 2017 Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Instruction and a $1,000 cash award. In her acceptance remarks, Strong-Green cited the integral role technical education plays in contributing to the economy of the state and the quality of life of Georgia citizens.
The first runner-up for the technical education student of the year was Gisella Brust, a radiologic technology student at Gwinnett Technical College. For the technical education instructor of the year, the first runner-up was Charles Avery, an emergency medical services instructor in the technical division of Bainbridge State College.