Section Divider

Albany Technical College Receives Share of $13.6M Consortium Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor


September 25, 2012- ALBANY, GA- Albany Technical College was recently one of three technical colleges in Georgia to be awarded a share of a $13.6 million dollar grant designed to enhance or add programs to prepare students to meet the needs of companies in the area of engineering technology.

Albany Technical College, Athens Technical College, and Atlanta Technical College were all awarded a Consortium grant in the amount of $13,551,923 for the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Training (TAACCCT) initiative from the U.S. Department of Labor. Albany Tech's share will be approximately $1.2 million over the next three-year period.

In 2009, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act amended the Trade Act of 1974 to authorize the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) Grant Program. On March 30, 2010, President Obama signed the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, which included $2 billion over four years to fund the TAACCCT program.

The three sister institutions, all part of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), will develop an integrated strategy that will add and/or enhance associate degree programs in the Engineering Technology field. This will be achieved by introducing embedded certificates to allow students in closely related programs, such as Industrial Systems Technology, to bridge into the engineering technology programs. The goal is to increase the number of graduates of associate degree programs in engineering technology in an effort to meet current and future workplace demands. In order to meet this goal, the three institutions must not only increase the number and types of programs available, but also implement initiatives that support students in accomplishing their educational goals, thus reducing the number who drop out of college.

The integrated strategy will embed basic skills development into entry-level occupational courses, redesign the delivery of learning support coursework, provide additional methods of technology-enhanced instruction, expand prior learning assessments, introduce contextualized, problem-based pedagogy, and provide wrap- around support services.

Since Albany Tech currently offers the associate degree programs in civil engineering technology and electromechanical engineering technology, the college plans to enhance these programs by adding much needed instructional equipment and introduce embedded certificate programs as they are developed. Each of the three colleges will develop a protocol for "prior learning assessment," in which students can obtain college credit for skills they've mastered previously in their jobs.

Athens Tech will be the lead college among the three institutions sharing in the U.S. Department of Labor grant. The engineering technology program will be open to all students, but two special target groups are long-term unemployed individuals and displaced workers as a result of jobs or manufacturing moving overseas.

In addition, all three technical colleges will partner with several state universities, including Southern Polytechnic State University in Marietta, where students will be able to enroll if they desire to pursue a bachelor's degree after completing a two-year associate's degree in engineering technology. Albany Tech has had an articulation agreement with Southern Polytechnic in engineering technology for approximately two years.

TAACCCT provides community colleges and other eligible institutions of higher education with funds to expand and improve their ability to deliver education and career training programs that can be completed in two years or less, are suited for workers who are eligible for training under the TAA for Workers program, and prepares program participants for employment in high-wage, high-skill occupations. Through these multi-year grants, the Department of Labor is helping to ensure that our nation's institutions of higher education are helping adults succeed in acquiring the skills, degrees, and credentials needed for high-wage, high-skill employment, while also meeting the needs of employers for skilled workers. The Department is implementing the TAACCCT program in partnership with the Department of Education.

See news coverage > WFXL | ALBANY HERALD

Download the Albany Tech App