ECCE student Tim Barlow Recognized as SWLE Paraprofessional of the Year

Oconee Fall Line Technical College (OFTC) Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) student, Tim Barlow, was recently recognized as Paraprofessional of the Year at Southwest Laurens Elementary (SWLE) School in Rentz. 

I felt very surprised but proud when I was announced parapro of the year,” Barlow said. “As most people know, the staff at SWLE are awesome.  It was a huge accomplishment to be chosen for this award. 

Barlow was voted recipient of this award by his peers as each SWLE school employee was allowed to vote who they believed should be chosen. The award was announced during an employee meeting in October during the school’s spirit week. 

“Being chosen for this award has definitely confirmed that I made the right career choice,” Barlow said. “Not only do I have the opportunity to be a role model to the children, I feel like I can motivate the staff as well, not that they need it.  At SWLE, we feel like a huge family.  It takes everyone to work together to accomplish great things, and I’m very grateful to be a part of the SWLE family.” 

Barlow works full-time at SWLE as a parapro in a pre-k classroom and is scheduled to complete his associate degree in Early Childhood Care and Education from OFTC in December. 

“First off, I could not do anything without God,” Barlow said when asked if there was anyone he wanted to thank. “I also want to mention my family who had a big role in me becoming an educator. My instructors at OFTC were also great, and they provided me with what I needed to be successful in my career. SWLE gave me the chance to begin my career, and I will always be so thankful for that. I just really appreciate everyone who played a role in me being where I am today.”  

For more info on OFTC’s ECCE program, visit the OFTC website, OFTC.edu.

OFTC ECCE student Tim Barlow (R) stands with his wife, Janet Barlow (L) after accepting the SWLE School Paraprofessional of the Year Award for 2019.

OFTC ECCE student Tim Barlow (R) stands with his wife, Janet Barlow (L) after accepting the SWLE School Paraprofessional of the Year Award for 2019.

### 

The mission of Oconee Fall Line Technical College, a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia, is to contribute to the economic and workforce development of east central Georgia through quality technical and continuing education, adult education, and business and industry services. The College offers associate degrees, diplomas, technical certificates of credit, and non-credit certificates in a student-centered learning environment through traditional and distance education modes of delivery.