Floyd County Schools (FCS) is pleased to announce collaborative agreement between FCS College and Career Academy (CCA) and the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI). This collaboration is part of the GTRI and FCS CCA’s on-going strategy to increase partnerships with business and industry. As a unit of the University System of Georgia, understanding and meeting the needs of industry to help create jobs in the state is a priority to Georgia Tech, and FCS is proud to provide these relevant learning opportunities to students.
“Many of our students are not aware of the different subsets of engineering. Areas like environmental and biomedical engineering are new and emerging fields and cross over into many different educational disciplines,” said John Parker, FCS Executive Director of Academics. “Relevance is attained through experience. To understand what an environmental engineer does requires actually meeting an environmental engineer. GTRI has gone out of their way to bridge the relevance gap for our students. We are extremely lucky to have them as a partner.”
On Tuesday, September 19th, 45 students from FCS CCA visited the GTRI to kick off the yearlong project. Students were excited and eager to have the opportunity to work with the professors and graduate students to begin the process of identifying and developing relevant projects that they will be working on during the school year that will be beneficial to the community.
Robert Wallace, Senior Scientist GTRI/ATAS/Energy & Sustainability understands the importance of this collaboration to help with bridging the gap between high school, postsecondary and industry. “Graduating high school presents a big change in young people’s lives,” said Wallace. “Our goal is to show the choices made by people only slightly older than them to attend college. As opposed to teachers, parents and others several years their senior, we hope 20 year old college student experiences are more relevant to an 18 year old getting ready to leave high school.”
“Many students have never been on a major college campus in there life much less have an opportunity to have lunch with an engineering graduate student on Georgia Tech’s campus,” said Craig Ellison, FCS Executive Director of Technology and Media Services. “Our CCA students were excited about the opportunity to partner with Georgia Tech. It was evident by the questions they were asking and how they were soaking up this opportunity to make contacts with engineering students and brainstorm with them to gain valuable insight and resources related to engineering careers.”
Throughout the 2017-2018 school year, the GTRI will work with a cohort group of FCS CCA students to help design relevant projects in areas such as computer programing, hydroponics, medical information technology, and unmanned vehicle technology. FCS CCA students will visit the Georgia Tech campus for research opportunities. Georgia Tech graduate students will visit the FCS CCA campus throughout the year to mentor cohort students.