News Release

For media information, contact:
Zaundra Brown
Director of Public Relations and Information
404.297.9522, ext. 1757


GPTC Unveils Special Screening of HBO's "The Weight of the Nation"
Supporting the Launch of Community Health and Wellness Initiativef – Be ACTive: A GPTC Lifestyle

DeKalb County - October 08, 2013

Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) held a screening of the HBO documentary "The Weight of the Nation" during the unveiling of its signature health and wellness initiative Be ACTive: A GPTC Lifestyle on its Newton Campus located at 8100 Bob Williams Parkway in Covington, Georgia.

Be ACTive is a comprehensive, college-wide community engagement program that encourages staying active as a way to maintain excellent health and achieve a better quality of life. The program promotes taking personal responsibility for achieving better health which, in turn, will improve the quality of life for individuals as well as communities.

The documentary revealed the sobering details of the obesity epidemic in America and the challenges we face as a society in combating this issue. The screening was part of a symposium led by Dr. Jabari Simama, President of GPTC, and followed by a panel discussion moderated by Mrs. Nisha Simama, wife of President Simama, and featured local health and wellness professionals and community leaders.

Panelists included:

  • Ms. Adriane Strong, MPH, Director of Health Education, NE Health District Morgan County Health Department;
  • Ms. Kenna Glick, Registered and Licensed Dietician/Nutritionist, Diabetes Education and Nutrition Services, Newton Medical Center;
  • Mr. Terrence Artis, Executive Director, A. R. "Gus" Barksdale Boys & Girls Club, Rockdale; and
  • Captain Diane Loos, Certified Personal Fitness Expert, Georgia Piedmont Technical College, Instructor, GPTC Law Enforcement Academy
Dr. Jabari Simama, Mrs. Nisha Simama, Captain Diane Loos, Ms. Adriane Strong, Ms. Kenna Glick, Mr. Terrence Artis
Left to right: Dr. Jabari Simama, Mrs. Nisha Simama, Captain Diane Loos, Ms. Adriane Strong, Ms. Kenna Glick, Mr. Terrence Artis

"Screening 'The Weight of the Nation' on our campus was a big first step for us as we launch the Be ACTive program throughout our campus communities," stated Dr. Jabari Simama, President, GPTC. "We plan to offer our voice and use our platform as a college to bring attention and awareness to the benefits of healthy living and spread the message right here in our community."

Mrs. Nisha Simama addresses the panel of experts
Mrs. Nisha Simama addresses the panel of experts

For more information regarding Be ACTive (and details on how to get involved), please contact Cynthia Dorsey Edwards, Vice President of Community Outreach and Engagement via email at or, call 404-297-9522.

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About Georgia Piedmont Technical College
Established in 1961, Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) is one of the top technical colleges in Georgia. As a student-centered institution, GPTC prepares individuals with the skills necessary to succeed in a rapidly changing, global economy. In August 2016, Georgia Piedmont was ranked among the top ten technical colleges in terms of enrollment by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. GPTC’s graduation rate is more than 74.3 percent, and its graduates secure employment at a level resulting in a 98.7 percent placement rate. With nearly 4,000 students, Georgia Piedmont’s adult education program is among the largest in the state. The college has 12 learning centers in DeKalb, Newton, Rockdale and Morgan counties. As set forth in its student catalog, Georgia Piedmont Technical College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, national or ethnic origin, sex, religion, disability, age, political affiliation or belief, genetic information, veteran status, or citizenship status (except in those special circumstances permitted or mandated by law). Contact Lisa Peters, the ADA Coordinator, at 404/297-9522, ext. 1154, or at the main DeKalb campus, 495 N. Indian Creek Drive, Clarkston, GA 30021 Room A-170; or Dr. Debra Gordon, the Title IX Coordinator, at 404/297-9522, ext. 1176, or at the main DeKalb campus, 495 N. Indian Creek Drive, Clarkston, GA 30021 Room A-103 for assistance. For more information about our graduation rates and other important program information, please visit our website at

A unit of the Technical College System of Georgia.