SGTC President speaks to Crisp County Lions Club
South Georgia Technical College President Dr. John Watford was the guest speaker at the Crisp County Lions Club meeting in Cordele recently. He gave members and guests a brief history of the college which is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year and updated members on the college’s Crisp County Center campus and new offerings planned for Fall semester.
“South Georgia Technical College was started in 1948 and this is our 70th anniversary. We are very proud of our past but are equally excited about the future,” said Dr. Watford. “We appreciate Crisp County and what you as the Lions Club and individual members do and have done for the college and our students. Our main focus is concentrated on what is good for students and the employers who hire our graduates. The employers are our customers and the students are the products that we provide to the employers who hire them. When we successfully meet the needs of the employers with qualified, trained employees, we are accomplishing our workforce development mission.”
Dr. Watford also shared that South Georgia Technical College had recently hired three new instructors for the Crisp County Center campus and that the college has plans to begin new programs at the Center this fall. “We have hired Deryk Stoops as the Electronics Instructor for the Crisp County Center. Eli Gonzalez is the new Criminal Justice Technology Instructor and Hunter Little has joined the college as the Crisp County Center Culinary Arts Instructor. We are excited about having these three individuals join us and believe that they will be a great asset for the students,” said Dr. Watford.
The SGTC President also shared that South Georgia Technical College had started the Air Conditioning Technology program on the Crisp County Center campus this past year and that the college has plans to start Industrial Systems Technology and Sports and Fitness Management programs in Cordele beginning Fall Semester.
“Great things are happening in Crisp County and we are pleased that this satellite campus is growing. We appreciate what you as leaders of this community do to support South Georgia Technical College and the students who choose us for their higher education option,” said Dr. Watford.
Dr. Watford also shared with the Lions Club how students are excelling nationally through academics, athletics, and student activities such as clubs and organizations. “This past year, we served over 550 high school students through our dual enrollment program that allows high school students to earn college credits while they are still in high school. We had five dual enrollment students that were recognized as part of the college graduation before they received their high school diplomas. That is exciting for the parents as well as the students.
“These students are learning what it means to be work ready in a specific career area or are earning college credits toward an associate’s degree. And it is at no cost to the students. Dual Enrollment is a great opportunity for high school students and their families,” explained Dr. Watford.
President Watford also mentioned that SGTC is one of the only colleges in the state that provides access to textbooks at no cost to students. “Thanks to the support that we have received from grants and our foundation partners like the Crisp County Lions Club, we have been able to provide our students with books to use each semester at no cost and that has been a tremendous help to our students.”
All of these different partnerships and program offerings has helped South Georgia Technical College’s enrollment. “Our enrollment is growing. This past semester enrollment was up almost 10% and it looks like we will continue that trend this summer and for the entire year.”
Dr. Watford shared that the college held a ribbon cutting recently on its newly renovated Morgan Diesel and Automotive Center. “Diesel is one of the initial programs offered at South Georgia Tech in 1948 and we are continuing that tradition as well as expanding the programs that we are offering now to include certificates such as Drone Repair and others.
“We have a proud past and a very promising future at South Georgia Tech,” said Watford. “The future is bright for South Georgia Tech and the students and the communities that we serve. We are making great things happen!”
South Georgia Technical College is currently enrolling students for its Fall semester. Class start on August 20th but individuals can go ahead and apply now for Fall Semester. For more information about registration or the over 200 programs offered at South Georgia Technical College visit the website at www.southgatech.edu or call the admissions office in Americus at 229-931-2760 or Cordele at 229-271-4053.