Stewart Houston awarded the South Georgia Technical College Foundation’s Phil Jones – Alfred “Foots” Harris scholarship

Published 11:26 pm Thursday, August 13, 2020

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By Su Ann Bird


AMERICUS – The South Georgia Technical College Foundation recently presented Stewart Houston, an outstanding Automotive Technology student with the Phil Jones – Alfred “Foots” Harris Automotive Scholarship.

SGTC President Dr. John Watford and SGTC Foundation Executive Director Su Ann Bird made the scholarship certificate presentations on behalf of the South Georgia Technical College Foundation in the John M. Pope Center on the college’s Americus campus.

SGTC Automotive Technology Instructor Brandon Dean was on hand for the presentation along Tom Jones, son of the late Phil Jones, and Vickie Harris Austin and Al Harris, daughter and son of the late Alfred “Foots” Harris.

Phil Jones and “Foots” Harris were lifelong friends and they shared a passion for automobiles.  This scholarship was established as a way to remember them as well as give back to others who shared their love of cars.

Vickie Austin and Al Harris congratulated Houston Stewart on the award and also challenged him to think about the type of impact that he will have on others that he comes in contact with today as well as tomorrow.  “Our father and Mr. Jones were well-respected and well-loved in this community.  It is our hope that you will carry that type of reputation forward in your life,” said Mrs. Austin.  “We congratulate you on your accomplishments and wish you the best in the future,” added Al Harris and Tom Jones.

Stewart, who is from Buena Vista, enrolled in the Automotive Technology program as a dual enrollment student at Marion County High School.  After graduation, he continued his studies at South Georgia Technical College.  Stewart thanked the family members for the scholarship opportunity.

The Jones-Harris Scholarship is designated for Automotive Technology students who excel academically. This scholarship endowment was established by Ruth Jones as a tribute to her late husband, Phil Jones, and his close friend, Alfred “Foots” Harris.  Mr. Harris passed away recently and the Harris family added to the endowed scholarship with the South Georgia Technical College Foundation.

Harris and Jones began their friendship as teenagers when they worked together and continued to be close friends and work associates until Jones’ death in 2003. Their mutual love of cars led to a long-lasting friendship and ultimately to a scholarship specifically designated for Automotive Technology students at SGTC. This was the first scholarship opportunity dedicated specifically for students in the Automotive Technology program.  Mr. Harris passed away in 2019.

Each year, Automotive Technology students are awarded scholarships to help defray the costs associated with college such as books, tuition, tools, dorm expenses, and other fees. Applicants are selected from the President’s list and recipients are chosen based upon a points system.

For more information about establishing an endowed scholarship with the South Georgia Technical College Foundation contact SGTC Executive Director Su Ann Bird at or 229-931-2110.  Donations to the foundation in honor or memory of loved ones can be sent to the SGTC Foundation, P.O. Box 6102, Americus, GA 31709.

South Georgia Technical College is currently enrolling students for Fall Semester.  For more information about the Automotive Technology program contact SGTC Automotive Technology Instructor Brandon Dean at or 229-931-4625.