Gwinnett Tech Introduces Alternative GED® and Workforce Skills Training Program
$300K Grant Funds New Gwinnett Advancement Program at GTC for Disadvantaged Youth
Gwinnett Technical College has received an Emerging Workforce grant of more than $300,000 from the Atlanta Regional Workforce Board (ARWB). The grant will allow the college to fund a new program, the Gwinnett Advancement Program (GAP), which will provide Gwinnett County teens who leave high school with needed workforce training skills and additional resources in preparing for the general education development diploma (GED®/high school equivalency).
Gwinnett County educators and administrators alike are concerned with providing young people who don't complete high school the necessary resources they need to help them succeed in today's competitive workplace.
The goal of Gwinnett Tech's new GAP program is to serve as such a resource for disadvantaGED® at-risk youth, ages 16-21, by providing pre-employment and work maturity skills, personal and social skills and GED® preparation so they may go on to be employable and competitive in the workforce.
The GED® test provides individuals 16+ years of age (who are beyond the age of compulsory high school attendance under state law) with an opportunity to earn a high school equivalency diploma. In order to pass the GED® test, a student must pass a series of five tests in writing skills, social studies, science, interpreting literature and arts and mathematics.
"Our role is to assist students in workforce preparation and to equip them with tools they need to succeed in life," said Gwinnett Tech Foundation Executive Director Mary Beth Byerly. "The college's new GAP program is an additional way we can serve as a catalyst for change in Gwinnett County. It allows us to continue to implement solutions to address the problem of so many students leaving high school without diplomas, unprepared to compete and thrive in our global environment."
The ARWB has awarded Emerging Workforce grants to four other nonprofit, community-based and/or educational entities in the Metro Atlanta region, in addition to Gwinnett Tech. The ARWB provides workforce solutions for dislocated workers, low-income adults and youth and for businesses seeking qualified applicants. Specifically, the ARWB's Services to Youth program addresses challenges faced by the region's youth who are from low-income families, school dropouts, runaways, homeless, youth with disabilities, juvenile offenders or in the foster care system.
Gwinnett Tech's GAP program will ensure many talented students receive high quality occupational skills training. The 20-week GAP program is scheduled to start in fall at Gwinnett Tech, with consecutive programs starting every semester thereafter. Students will be prepared and qualified to take the GED® test at the culmination of each GAP session.
For more information on the GAP program at Gwinnett Tech, call 678-226-6290.
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