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A Workforce Solution Strategy in Action

This Girl Can:

The first graduates of the “This Girl Can” program were honored in a ceremony at the Southeastern Technical College on December 2. The program is part of the Greater Vidalia Workforce Development Strategy 2021, and was chaired by Director of Toombs County Family Connection Paige Williamson. As the second priority in the Development Strategy, the initiative focused on introducing middle school girls in this area to nontraditional, local pathways for women.

Beginning November 1, the students experienced pathways in robotics, truck driving, welding, automotive, electronics technology, and even a session with a female lineman with Georgia Power.

During the graduation ceremony, Helen Thomas of STC expressed the college’s excitement in partnering with the Chamber and Family Connection to provide young female students with hands-on experience in nontraditional career pathways for women.

District 156 Representative Leesa Hagan (R-Vidalia) was the keynote speaker for the occasion and encouraged participants to follow their dreams and utilize the knowledge they’ve gained to inform their decisions moving forward.

“Representative Hagan is a perfect example of a woman smashing the proverbial glass ceiling. She is the very first woman to represent District 156 in the Georgia House of Representatives and what a wonderful inspiration she is,” Williamson noted.

The audience also heard testimonials from two of the program’s participants, Gracie Green and Katie Eduardo, and all of the girls received a certificate of completion, a TGC T-shirt, and a stainless steel water bottle.

“ We are grateful to our community leaders for their continued support,” Williamson added. “This Girl Can” was made possible by the sponsorship of Georgia Power and Trane Technologies and partners Southeastern Technical College, Southeast Early College and Career Academy, Chicken of the Sea, Vidalia City Schools, and Toombs County Schools. The Greater Vidalia Workforce Development Strategy is an initiative of the Toombs County Development Authority, the Greater Vidalia Chamber, Chicken of the Sea, DOT Foods, Georgia Power, Meadows Health, Southern Nuclear, and Trane Technologies. Visit Toombs County Family Connection Facebook page Toombs County Family Connection and Instagram at This Girl Can for more pictures.

DOT FOODS GROUP — This Girl Can participants at DOT Foods, left to right, are Mamie Telfair, Tiffany George, Keshonna McLeod, Janiya McGee, a DOT Foods driver whose name was unavailable, Azion Phillips, Marley Nichols, Addison Smith, Gracie Green, and D’charia Troup.

WELDING WORKSHOP — The program introduced participants to welding in Michael Crumpler’s class at Southeastern Technical College.

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