Norris Signs with Middle Georgia Freightliner during OFTC Ceremony
Oconee Fall Line Technical College (OFTC) Diesel Equipment Technology student, Ann Norris, signed a letter of intent to work for Middle Georgia Freightliner-Isuzu during a career signing ceremony held at OFTC’s Dublin Campus. Monday, November 4.
Middle Georgia Freightliner-Isuzu is a truck service and parts dealership in Macon; Norris officially began her employment as a maintenance technician on Tuesday, November 5.
In this role, Norris will use the skills and training she’s received at OFTC to perform mechanical tasks to rebuild Detroit Engines and other maintenance-related work including servicing clutches, brakes and performing diagnostics.
“Employees in technical jobs are vital to our success as a nation,” shared Brent Redfern, OFTC’s diesel instructor. “It is important that the public knows and understands what technical education does for our community.”
“The signing ceremony we held today for Ann has the potential to motivate people who are thinking about going to college to come and see what OFTC has to offer and to meet our faculty and staff,” Redfern added. “This ceremony actually shows where the rubber meets the road and we are so proud to say we do move our students from education and skills training into work.”
Norris began as a student in OFTC’s Automotive Technology program and graduated with her diploma in May 2019. She then transitioned into the College’s Diesel Equipment Technology program and is scheduled to graduate with her diploma this December.
“Today’s signing ceremony for Ann solidifies OFTC’s willingness to train individuals in a trade that has more people retiring from it than there are willing individuals to do the job,” shared Middle Georgia Freightliner-Isuzu’s General Manager, Heath Wood. “OFTC is offering a program that Middle Georgia Freightliner-Isuzu can pull future professionals like Ann from. It’s not just about teaching a trade,” he said, “it’s about making a difference in people’s future.”
“It’s important to me that we recognize people like Ann who take the initiative to put themselves through school to make a career,” Wood added. “We recognize college students, high school students, doctors, lawyers, etc. Why not recognize people who successfully complete an equally challenging training regimen that not many people have the mentality to do? It’s a skill set, just like any other industry and not everyone is mentally geared for it; those who are should be rewarded and compensated for their abilities.”
OFTC’s diesel program does qualify for Georgia’s Hope Career Grant and free tuition and is available to HOPE Grant-qualified students who enroll in select majors specifically aligned with industries in which there are more jobs available in Georgia than there are skilled workers to fill them.