By Nick Nunn staff writer

Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) held their Board of Directors meeting at Serenata Farm, 2911 Clack Road, Madison, on Thursday, July 17, in order to discuss the upcoming academic year, GPTC’s ongoing programs, and their role and presence in Morgan County. GPTC currently offers classes at their Morgan County location, which is inside the county building at 150 East Washington Street, Madison. They recently partnered with Morgan County’s Family Connection and the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission for the first Morgan County class of the Workplace Fundamentals Skill Training program, a 94-hour course that aims to prepare the unemployed with a variety of necessary professional skills. GPTC offers additional programs to Morgan County residents, including dual enrollment programs for Morgan County High School students and GED preparation classes. Jabari Simama, president of GPTC, said that he is looking forward to expanding additional educational opportunities into Morgan County in the future and hopes that GPTC can be present in Morgan County in a more “meaningful” way.

Simama’s report to the board of directors discussed the primary strategic goals for GPTC during his report, which involves providing excellence in education, management, communication and engagement. He said that those priorities have helped them to meet 17 of the 21 Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) benchmarks on their recent scoring round, placing them first in their college peer group and only second in the system of 24 colleges in Georgia that are currently working to meet the TCSG benchmarks. Simama also discussed the groundbreaking for GPTC’s Regional Transportation Training Center, which will house their Transit Training program. The program is the only accredited program for transportation training on the east coast and is a partnership between GPTC and MARTA. He also brought up GPTC’s involvement in the Be ACTive program, which has recently led to the creation of walking trails on their DeKalb and Newton campuses.