Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) received a $95,000 grant as part of the Johnson Controls Community College Partnership Program, which aims to equip students with in-demand knowledge and skills to support employment upon graduation.

GPTC is one of ten technical and community colleges across the nation receiving grants for the 2021‒2022 academic year but the only college in the state of Georgia. The grant is provided by Johnson Controls in an effort to expand associate degree and certificate programs in heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), fire and security and digital building automation systems, all areas in which the U.S. Bureau of Labor predicts an increased need for skilled trades expertise in the coming years.

“The focus of what we do at Georgia Piedmont Tech is workforce development. This partnership with Johnson Controls strengthens the bond between industry and education and helps pave the way for students to learn the skills necessary to enter these growing industries,” said Cory Thompson, executive director of institutional advancement and the GPTC Foundation.

The college will use its funding to purchase additional lab equipment for the Building Automaton Systems program and to upgrade hands-on training simulators. Further, the college will refresh its commercial refrigeration and welding programs and update related program marketing to underserved communities.

“We also plan to build up our Sustainable Technologies technical certificate program through added controls equipment and teaching manpower so the program can be revived,” said Robert Croom, program director for Air Conditioning, Building Automation and Commercial Refrigeration at GPTC.

Building owners and contracting firms must now consider the environmental impacts of their activities and the alternative options which are now available to them with the advent of advanced building control systems, smart grid technologies, alternative energy like wind and solar power, investment-grade energy audits and the new Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards, added Croom regarding the significance a program focused on sustainability.

In addition to the funding, Johnson Controls employees will support GPTC through volunteering and mentorships, providing students with real-world experience, internship opportunities and professional networking connections.

“Johnson Controls is proud to build upon our significant presence in the city by partnering with Georgia Piedmont Tech on the Community College Partnership Program. We believe the program will empower people to build life-long careers that will transform their lives and the city,” said Vice President of Public Affairs and Chief Diversity Officer Grady Crosby. “Just as smart, healthy buildings are critical to our well-being, well-educated and trained technicians are crucial to keeping our environments operating safely and efficiently. As a leader in the building industry for over a century, Johnson Controls is honored to share our expertise with the country’s leading community colleges.”

The full list of grant recipients can be found here.

To learn more about Johnson Controls strategic approach to philanthropy and volunteerism, please visit

Image information: Robert Croom, program director for Air Conditioning, Building Automation and Commercial Refrigeration at GPTC (left), and student Adam Lovell collaborate on a building engineering project at the college’s DeKalb Campus in Clarkston.


About Johnson Controls:

At Johnson Controls (NYSE:JCI), we transform the environments where people live, work, learn and play. As the global leader in smart, healthy and sustainable buildings, our mission is to reimagine the performance of buildings to serve people, places and the planet.

With a history of more than 135 years of innovation, Johnson Controls delivers the blueprint of the future for industries such as healthcare, schools, data centers, airports, stadiums, manufacturing and beyond through its comprehensive digital offering, OpenBlue. With a global team of 100,000 experts in more than 150 countries, Johnson Controls offers the world’s largest portfolio of building technology, software as well as service solutions with some of the most trusted names in the industry. For more information, visit or follow us @johnsoncontrols on Twitter.

For more information, contact:

Jana Wiggins, Consultant, Marketing & Communications
Georgia Piedmont Technical College
404.297.9522, ext. 1231

Kellie Harris, Director of Media and PR
Johnson Controls