As a product of technical school myself, a proud supporter of Gwinnett Tech and a member of their Board of Trustees for several years, I often get asked about how students can take their technical education and turn it into a career.

Gwinnett Tech enrolls more than 11,000 students each year in over 140 degree and certificate programs, and they have added a brand new program called Launch Pointe to include work-based learning coursework to help students gain experience in actual work environments.

Employers increasingly look for graduates who bring the tangible experience of having applied principles learned in the classroom into actual workplace settings through internships and similar learning experiences.

They seek students who have mastered vital employment skills, including effectively and professionally communicating with customers, independently solving problems, meeting crucial deadlines and leading teams toward achieving goals.

These are the skills that impress employers and set those students up for lifelong success. 

About Launch Pointe

Launch Pointe will serve as a one-stop resource for work-based learning and career development. Working with both large and small business employers, it will develop internships to match students with training opportunities that align with their programs of study to further enhance their classroom instruction and support academic learning outcomes.

Additionally, these internships will serve as a fertile training ground for aspiring student entrepreneurs by providing exposure to sound business principles and work ethics.

I’m also excited that Launch Pointe will provide access to resources designed to support students on their paths to building and launching their own businesses. I always knew I wanted to start my own business, and this program will be invaluable to any budding entrepreneurs at Gwinnett Tech. 

Once fully established, Launch Pointe will target small business owners from the College’s alumni to provide access to a host of services and resource organizations, helping to sustain their ongoing growth while providing additional internship opportunities to students.

This outreach will directly benefit students like David Hardy, the recipient of our scholarship this year at Gwinnett Tech this year.

Next Steps

The Launch Pointe program has been divided into three phases, and the first phase has included a search for a Director of Career Experience  to develop and expand work-based learning opportunities for currently enrolled students.

I’m excited Gwinnett Tech has hired Phoebe Coquerel, an experienced and dedicated employee who will focus on building working relationships with academic deans and program directors to support existing internship courses, and to help develop new internship opportunities. 

Together, we are all working towards a goal of developing and launching 200 new student internships with business partners throughout our community!

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