GNTC Child Care Scholar to Represent Region at State Conference

September 18, 2018

Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) student Amy McKinnie will represent the college at the Georgia Association for the Education of Young Children (GAEYC) Annual Conference October 5-6. McKinnie is an Early Childhood Care and Education major at GNTC.

The Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia resident will serve as an ambassador for the collegiate program. “I won’t be giving a speech, really,” said McKinnie. “I’ll be sharing my story with others and just how this choice has helped my life.” McKinnie has been a part of the DECAL Scholars program since her enrollment at Georgia Northwestern. The program is designed to help provide scholarships and assistance to students choosing the Early Childhood Care and Education field.

“I first heard about the program at work and it has allowed me to pursue college at my own pace while also supplementing my income,” said McKinnie. “I needed to take time off work to go to school and the scholarship program assisted me so that was possible.”

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, McKinnie relocated to Northwest Georgia in 2012. The 32-year old mother of one has been working childcare for the past four years with Noah’s Ark Christian Learning Center in Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia. In addition, with a child in pre-school herself, McKinnie finds a real passion in working in the field. Her four-year-old, Calleigh, attends a North Georgia Pre-K program.

In July 2017, McKinnie was asked to be an Assistant in a Georgia Pre-K program. “It was a salary position and I have been in that same position ever since,” said McKinnie. “Noah's Ark Christian Learning Center has been such a blessing.” Due in part to her willingness to help her co-workers, as well as keeping up with the DECAL Scholars program, she was invited to be an ambassador at this year’s GAEYC conference. The event is being held at Gwinnett Technical College in Alpharetta, Georgia.

“I originally studied Psychology when I lived in California,” said McKinnie. “When I moved to Georgia, I needed a job and working at a school came so naturally. My mother has been a teacher as long as I have been alive and I believe it's in my blood! I began classes and I have never had such good grades in my life! It really feels like a good fit.”

A student of Georgia Northwestern Technical College instructors Tracy Wimberley and Susan Kendrick in the college’s Childhood Care and Education program, McKinnie says they have both been important in her career path. “Both of them have been instrumental in my success as a student,” said McKinnie. “They are both the sweetest people and so kind and helpful. I have called them both when I have been overwhelmed by life and unsure of what to do with my education, and they guide me to the best options.”

McKinnie will soon complete her diploma in Early Childhood Care and Education. She is also pursuing her Associate’s Degree in the same program offered at Georgia Northwestern Technical College. She is newly married to her husband, Marcus. “He’s very supportive of my career and our daughter.”

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, 16,402 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,750 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 8,652 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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