Helping Our Soldiers at Home, Georgia Northwestern Management Students Put Their Hearts to Work

February 7, 2017
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When a class works together at Georgia Northwestern Technical College, there is a common goal. In Leyner Argueta’s Business Management “Team Project” course, the goal has been taking care of one of their own.

“They really put their hearts to work,” said Argueta of his Fall 2016 Team Project students. “We have a U.S. Marine veteran in our program whose family has a huge need. These students wanted to show this veteran, now home for good, their appreciation.” They wanted to help provide him with a new home. A house in a country that Bradley Ramirez helped protect while serving overseas.

They got their initial idea from press coverage. A story about Ramirez and the help of the Wells Fargo Home Mortgage company in Dalton, Georgia has now turned into different people coming together over the past year to be able to care for one of North Georgia’s own. Ramirez and his family came home to their house a little over a year ago. The condition of the home required a complete demolition and rebuild. Ramirez and his family would need a miracle.

And miracles are just what they got. Plenty of them.

Thanks to the help of several Whitfield County companies and organizations, the man who served our country for nine years, including two tours in Afghanistan, is closer to his family’s brand new home. Northwest Georgia groups donated their time and service with demolition provided by the American Legion, materials courtesy of Johns Lumber, and blueprints handled by Habitat For Humanity.

With so many banding together to do what was right, it left Ramirez’ family humbled and in awe. “We didn’t expect it,” said Bradley Ramirez’ wife, Argelia. “When he told me, I almost cried. It’s just something we didn’t expect.” That’s when Argueta’s classmates stepped in to continue the giving spirit.

“They wanted to raise $10,000 to help with the process,” said Argueta. “It seemed possible to do. But, they had to up their game as the class went along.” As they learned what it would take to raise funding for a not-for-profit cause, the lessons would come fast. “They started by selling doughnuts,” shared Argueta. “However, that effort would only get them to a fraction of their goal. So, they then moved on to selling Belk’s Discount cards. They even had special t-shirts made and sold them. The business mentality took over. They had put their passion to work and it helped them reach the goal.”

Argueta’s goal at one time had been to be a successful businessman. Then, in 2012, the Chicago, Illinois native first came to Northwest Georgia. “I really wanted to find an opportunity where I could make a difference,” commented Argueta. After stopping over in Calhoun, Georgia during a trip into the Southeastern U.S., Argueta really felt he may have found a place his family could make their mark.

A businessman by trade, Argueta would be pulled into the education industry. However, the die-hard Chicago Cubs fan would also get another call. He is now a pastor at Faith Moves Church in Calhoun, Georgia. The bilingual church is the only one of its kind in our region as the message is delivered each week in Spanish and English, simultaneously. And, to no one’s surprise, one of the big practices parishioners at his church are encouraged to do daily: To share the love of Christ in the community.

“These students in our Team Project classes are just giving back, not only for their needed credit, but also because they felt it was simply the right thing to do,” said Argueta. Now that the Fall 2016 Team Project class is done, the Spring 2017 class is carrying on with business in the same giving manner. They are helping collect and distribute women’s undergarments for women in Haiti. “One of the students did a mission trip their previously and learned of the need,” said Argueta.

As for Ramirez, he anticipates to be in his own Team Project class in the next few terms. An expert in Supply Chain Management while serving the United States Marine Corps, Ramirez hopes to find another veteran who may need similar assistance and keep the project going. “I almost left school to get a full-time job to start raising money for the house,” said Ramirez in regards to his own home.

A graduate of Phoenix High School in 2007, Ramirez has decided to call Dalton, Georgia home for his children, as well. Bradley and Argelia Ramirez have three children, Bradley, Callie, and Gracie. If you are interested in donating to the project, you can mail gifts to American Legion Post 112, P.O. Box 932, Dalton, Georgia 30722. All checks should include “Project Avenue C” in the memo line.

For more information on Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s Business Management program, you can call 866-983-4682. For information online, visit the college at, as well as on GNTC’s Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, WordPress, and YouTube channels. GNTC is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and an equal opportunity institute.

Since 1962, Georgia Northwestern Technical College has provided degrees, diplomas, and certificates in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.

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