GNTC Headlines NW Georgia’s Focus on Higher Education

Business and political leaders from Dalton, Georgia, as well as all across the Northwest Georgia region were on hand for the Greater Dalton Chamber of Commerce’s “Good Morning Dalton: Higher Education” event Tuesday morning at the Dalton Convention Center.

Students and administration from both Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) and Dalton State College shared their stories of success and growth with those in attendance. For GNTC, Social Work Assistant program student Pamela Tallent, Business Management alumnus Adrian Gutierrez, and College President Pete McDonald took the stage. All three spoke on the impact the college has had, as well as the growth it has seen in just the past few years.

“GNTC has a role to play of putting people into the workplace,” said McDonald. “That is our job. Our job is to train the workforce. We need to do that as quickly as possible and inexpensively as possible.” Tallent, a current student, and Gutierrez, a graduate of GNTC, both commented on the efficiency and affordability of higher education at GNTC.  

President and CEO of the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) and Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) Board Member Joe Yarbrough, left, speaks on behalf of Georgia Northwestern Technical College President Pete McDonald. Yarbrough spoke in regards to McDonald’s pending retirement and his lifetime of dedication to higher education in Northwest Georgia.
President and CEO of the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) and Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) Board Member Joe Yarbrough, left, speaks on behalf of Georgia Northwestern Technical College President Pete McDonald. Yarbrough spoke in regards to McDonald’s pending retirement and his lifetime of dedication to higher education in Northwest Georgia.

Gutierrez spoke of his life that begin in poverty in Mexico. However, he wanted to change all of that beginning with plenty of help from a proper education once his family moved to the United States. “I was born and raised with very little expectation of success,” said Gutierrez. “Basically, I had no education in the beginning and went to work at the age of nine years old.”

After coming to the states, Gutierrez would eventually move on to learn to speak English, earn his GED®, and then a college education from GNTC. Gutierrez is now taking classes at Dalton State College to further his education and career.

Tallent spoke about her home life and the demands it had on her and how it would impact her own success. “After being out of school for more than 16 years, I have truly learned so much from the Social Work Assistant program. I will definitely pursue my Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work next. GNTC set me up for long-term financial gain, job stability, career satisfaction, and success outside of the work place.”

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, 12,785 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,499 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,286 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia and an Equal Opportunity Institution.

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