Press Release: Georgia Consortium for Advanced Technical Training kicks off

18.05.16 GACC South Atlanta - News-Hauptkategorie, GACC South News

The U.S.'s first German-style, high school apprenticeship gets the green light

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle of Georgia signed the first U.S. apprenticeship consortium for high school students into effect at a commencement event in Newnan, GA May 16.

The focus on high school students, as young as 15, and the partnership of sponsoring companies makes this apprenticeship program unique.

“We are the first in the country,” said Cagle. “And what we are going to witness is not just the 11 students that will be awarded here in Coweta County, but this program spreading across the entire state.”

Similar programs already exist, but, often, participating students must be high school graduates or the programs are only sponsored by one company.

“We have the recipe and the ingredients, the companies and educational institutions are going to have to cook the meal,” said the Vice President of the GACC South, Stefanie Jehlitschka.

German Chambers of Commerce have served as the lead organizers and certifiers of apprenticeship programs in Germany for more than 100 years. The German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern U.S., GACC South, fulfills their role here in the South.

Jehlitschka joined Cagle in signing the memorandum of understanding and placing the Georgia Consortium for Advanced Technical Training, GA CATT, into effect.

GA CATT trainees will pay no tuition, obtain a German technical career certification, a high school diploma, an associates degree from West Georgia Technical College, and get paid during the entire process. Students’ hourly wages will start at $8 and rise to $12 by the time they are seniors.

The GA CATT Apprenticeship program mixes hands-on experience with in-class study and conceptual learning. Twenty students will compete for almost a dozen spots in the inaugural GA CATT Industrial Mechanics class beginning fall 2016.

“This apprenticeship model really does afford students the chance to not only better themselves, but to allow businesses to thrive as well,” said Cagle.

Representatives of he GACC South, industry partners, program candidates and parents, and legislative supporters attended the program launch.

Sponsoring companies include Grenzebach Corporation, Yamaha Motor Manufacturing Corporation, Yokogawa Corporation of America, KCMA Corporation, E.G.O. North America, Kason Industries, Inc. Winpak Films, Inc., and Groov-Pin Corporation of GA.