PRESS RELEASE

WOODSTOCK, GA (May 10, 2024) Be Pro Be Proud Georgia unveiled its interactive Mobile Workshop on May 7 in Woodstock, preceding Skilled Professions Signing Day. The launch event, hosted by the Cherokee Office of Economic Development, highlighted the initiative’s commitment to inspiring young people to pursue fulfilling careers within skilled professions.

“We’re so excited about the new workshop, but the ones who will really benefit from this are the kids in Cherokee County and the rest of the state,” said Misti Martin, President & CEO of the Cherokee Office of Economic Development (COED).

The new Be Pro Be Proud Georgia Mobile Workshop is a cutting-edge eighteen-wheeler with lateral sides that expand to provide a thousand square feet of showroom space. Designed to address Georgia’s critical skills gap, the Mobile Workshop is equipped with simulators and gamified stations to ignite student interest in various trades and encourage them to build successful futures without the potential burden of four-year university college debt.

The new Mobile Workshop opened its doors to attendees at Chattahoochee Technical College’s Woodstock Campus at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday. Attendees were able to tour the new Mobile Workshop, exploring career opportunities in nineteen skilled trades pathways such as advanced manufacturing, diesel tech, forestry, heavy equipment operations, construction, healthcare and commercial truck driving. Local employers, workforce development advocates, county leaders, state leaders and leaders in education experienced this engaging initiative.

Woodstock Mayor Michael Caldwell welcomed attendees. “What an absolutely outstanding effort,” said Mayor Caldwell. “Georgia is the number one state to do business today, and it’s going to be tomorrow, and ten years from now, and fifty years from now, because of programs like Be Pro Be Proud Georgia.”

Remarks followed from Cherokee By Choice, Inc. Chairman Mark Goddard, COED President & CEO Misti Martin, Cherokee County Commission Chairman Harry Johnston, Cherokee County School District Superintendent Mary Elizabeth Davis, Chattahoochee Technical College President Ron Newcomb and Georgia Power Workforce Development Manager and Be Pro Be Proud Advisory Board Member, Jamal Jessie.

“If you want to attract good jobs, and good companies that bring those good jobs, and the good tax digest that goes with it, you have to have a job ready workforce – that’s exactly what Be Pro Be Proud Georgia is for,” said Commissioner Harry Johnston. “We’re trying to attract the attention of middle and high school kids who have not yet made career plans.”

“Having the workforce which has the skills and knowledge, and having the businesses that need those skills and knowledge, and having communities that recognize and take advantage of that is a win-win for everybody,” remarked Ron Newcomb, President of Chattahoochee Technical College.

Following the launch event, Be Pro Be Proud Georgia, COED and Chattahoochee Technical College hosted Skilled Professions Signing Day, an annual event that honors and celebrates the commitment of Cherokee County high school seniors pursuing skilled professions. Fifty-three students were honored.

“Being in these skilled trades programs are fantastic,” said Jacob Anderson, a 2023 Skilled Professions Signing Day honoree. “I work at North Atlanta Steel Supply…I sat in the same seats as all of you guys last year. I graduated and got my welding certificate from Cherokee High School and went straight into the career field. I had drive, and I learned, and I pushed myself to be better. Now, nine months in, I am being trained to be the foreman of the shop.”

COED brought Be Pro Be Proud to the state of Georgia in 2020, with the launch of its first mobile workshop. “We saw a need to introduce not just students in Cherokee, but students across the state to the skilled professions,” said Misti Martin, COED President & CEO. “That need has continued to grow. Be Pro Be Proud has been a vital tool in introducing students to key pathways and needed skillsets in our economy.”

The investment in the second mobile workshop allows for greater exposure and impact across the state. Since its inception, Be Pro Be Proud Georgia has made 307 tour stops across the state, reaching over fifty-seven thousand students – a number that continues to grow. The Be Pro Be Proud GA Mobile Workshop will continue to tour the state, engaging students and communities to explore the possibilities of skilled professions and build a stronger workforce for Georgia’s future. Visit BeProBeProudGA.org to learn more and join the movement.

 

 

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