News Release

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


First Class of GPTC Celebrates Graduation
TCSG Commissioner offers advice on life’s attributes: Attitude, Influence & Gratitude

Clarkston, GA - June 04, 2012

GPTC 2012 Graduation
Photo: Commissioner Jackson presents one of the first degrees to Joan Apparicio, A Criminal Justice Technology Student

Commencement exercises for the first graduating class of Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) were held recently. Nearly 500 students qualified for graduation by earning a diploma or an Associates of Applied Science degree. Last fall the college changed its name from DeKalb Technical College to Georgia Piedmont Technical College to better reflect the community it serves in DeKalb, Rockdale, Newton and Morgan counties.

This is the first general graduation ceremony since that transition. The commencement program was held at The Greater Travelers Rest Baptist Church on Flat Shoals Parkway in Decatur.

The ceremony was filled with pomp and pageantry as students filed in behind the college’s administration, faculty and staff. More than 250 students participated in the commencement program. The keynote speaker for the event was Ron Jackson, Commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia. He provided words of encouragement and gave a perspective on life and education. He encouraged the graduates to focus on three key attributes: attitude, influence and gratitude “With the credentials you receive today, these three life attributes will aid you in creating not only a fulfilling life, but a successful career,” said Jackson. The commissioner went on to quote former British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill in saying, “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.” Jackson encouraged the graduates to become a positive influence and impact the lives of others, and finally be grateful for the people who have impacted your life.

Traditionally graduates from Georgia Piedmont Technical College enjoy a 98% employment rate after graduation. Nearly 80% gain employment within the industry that they’ve studied..

Georgia Piedmont Technical College, a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia, promotes a student-centered environment for lifelong learning and development, encompassing academic and technical education for employment in a global community. The college has nine centers of learning in DeKalb, Newton, Rockdale, and Morgan counties. Georgia Piedmont Technical College currently has more than 5,000 students enrolled in diploma or degree programs and more than 9,000 in adult education classes.  Academic and Technical programs at Georgia Piedmont Tech cover more than 120 different occupations. For more information, visit our website at

Additional photos on GPTC’s Facebook page

# # #

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.