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Alcovy High gets manufacturing industry grant

COVINGTON -- Some Alcovy High School students now have the opportunity to improve their manufacturing and design skills.

The Newton County School System recently announced that the school was awarded a $10,800 Industry Certification Grant from the Georgia Department of Education. It was a competitive grant applied for by the NCSS Career, Technical and Agriculture Education department.

"We worked with industry leaders to identify what was needed to bring the program to industry standards," said James Woodard, director of Technical and Agriculture Education at NCSS. "This grant gives the program the funding necessary to purchase updates to help meet industry training standards."

He said the school now will be able to acquire updates to curriculum, equipment and technology in order to complete the GaDOE Industry Certification Process.

"This process will validate that the program meets standards set forth by industry," Woodard said. "Students in the program will have access to the same training that industry provides."

This includes students being trained to do computer-aided design using the program Auto Desk, which is used throughout the industry, he said.

In the early spring, a team of industry leaders will evaluate the program and, if warranted, designate Alcovy High's manufacturing/engineering program as industry certified, Woodard said.

"Completing industry certification demonstrates that the Newton County School System is dedicated to serving the needs of the community through providing opportunities for students to receive relevant training that will allow for smoother transitions into the work force or post-secondary training," said Douglas Blackwell, engineering/manufacturing teacher at Alcovy High.