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Welcome to the Gwinnett Tech online newsroom, featuring facts and stats about the college, plus our history, a media archive and photos for download. If you are a member of the media needing information, contact or call 678-495-3638.

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July 05, 2006

Gwinnett Tech’s Steve Conway Earns Certified Economic Developer Trainer Designation
Eighteen months of training prepares graduate to recruit companies to Gwinnett


Steve Conway, automotive technology division director at Gwinnett Technical College, is one of 20 professionals to earn Certified Economic Developer Trainer (CEDT) status after completing a rigorous program of specialized training.

CEDT training is provided by the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education’s (DTAE) Quick Start program for its economic development staff. Joining an elite group of more than 100 CEDTs statewide, Conway can better help Gwinnett County attract new companies, while also aiding existing manufacturing and service industries develop a skilled workforce.

DTAE commissioner Mike Vollmer presented the CEDT certificates at a luncheon ceremony held this month at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Macon, Georgia.

“The jobs that are here in Georgia today require much higher skills that yesterday’s jobs as manufacturing becomes more highly automated,” Vollmer said. “The purpose of the CEDT program is to provide the most current knowledge and skills in industry trends and technologies so that we ensure relevancy and consistency in the quality of business and industry training services provided by Georgia’s technical colleges and our Quick Start team.” Vollmer challenged the graduates to train Georgia workers in the new skills that industry requires so that the workers, their families and communities, and Georgia can prosper.

Each graduate spends about 400-500 hours during the training strengthening their skills in recruiting new companies to their communities. The 20 graduates are the 11th graduating CEDT class; a new class is planned for the fall of this year.

“We value such in-depth training programs which allow our faculty and staff to grow and develop in their roles with the college and in the community,” said Sharon Rigsby, president, Gwinnett Technical College. “Steve has been a real asset to the college and the automotive technology division and this certification will benefit him and Gwinnett Tech, as well as our business partners and companies that relocate to the region.”

During their 18 months in the program, CEDT program participants attend a series of 12 in-depth, hands-on training sessions, participate in four industry site visits to analyze operations, and complete four independent projects. The projects include developing an economic development profile for their community and completing a process analysis of a manufacturing industry.

Projects are evaluated and graded by the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Partnership with this globally recognized business and management training organization assures consistent and professional evaluation of each CEDT participant’s project.

Conway has been involved in economic development efforts in Gwinnett County for 13 years, working to train tomorrow’s automotive technicians and place them in various dealerships and repair shops in Gwinnett as well as metro Atlanta. He established a new diesel equipment program four years ago and also became one of only two master trainers for the state’s emission repair training program sponsored by the Georgia EPD Clean Air Branch in the late 1990s.

For more information about this certification program, contact the CEDT office at 404-253-2828.

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About Gwinnett Tech
Gwinnett Technical College, one of Georgia's largest technical colleges, is committed to delivering relevant knowledge to meet the workforce training needs of the region it serves. The college offers more than 50 associate degree, diploma and certificate programs and hundreds of seminars, workshops and courses providing specialized training. Gwinnett Tech's service area includes Gwinnett and North Fulton counties. Gwinnett Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award the associate degree. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Gwinnett Technical College. In addition, some college programs hold separate licensure or accreditation status with appropriate agencies. For more information, visit

A unit of the Technical College System of Georgia.

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