Career Guidance

Monthly panel provides job information

by Wes Mayer

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Volunteer Andy Whitlock introduced the panel discussion at Tuesday's job network meeting at Parish Hall.

Locals had the opportunity to attend a free job networking panel meeting at Parish Hall on Tuesday evening.

Every second Tuesday of the month, Parish Hall at the First United Methodist Church on 33 Greenville Street hosts a program helping attendees find jobs and boost their networking skills. This Tuesday, volunteers with the Job Networking Ministry put together a panel of members who gave advice on how adults can further their education.

'Our mission is to help the unemployed and underemployed in Newnan,' said Andy Whitlock, one of the head volunteers with the ministry. 'It is not only about people helping themselves, but about helping others as well.'

Peter Ludlow, associate provost at West Georgia Technical College's Coweta Campus, introduced the panel with the message that a great education is one of the most important assets for adults in this economy.

'You need an education and a skill to get the job that you want,' Ludlow said. 'There are still employers scrambling to find those skilled hires. Regardless of your age, there are still plenty of jobs available.'

The panel was hosted by Mark Whitlock, CEO of the Central Education Center in Newnan. He began the panel by showing a video about the programs the CEC offers for people of all ages who are seeking an education. The video greatly focused on the Georgia College and Career Academies, hands-on learning environments that help students bridge the gap between high school and college educations by teaching them specialized skills. The panel members also provided information about the local educational opportunities in Coweta County. Lou Robinson, admissions counselor for Mercer University's Newnan Regional Academic Center, Cathy Wright, director of the University of West Georgia's Newnan facility, Sarah Dick, admissions counselor with West Georgia Technical College's Coweta Campus, and Anita Carter, director of instruction at West Georgia Technical College's Virtual Learning Campus each informed attendees about their educational programs adults would perform well in. These programs included early childhood education, public safety, nursing and a variety of technical courses. The panel members also answered any questions the attendees had and gave additional information about available financial aid.

The panel was closed by Alan Hurd with the Newnan Department of Labor, saying that there were more than 100 employers in Newnan looking for workers right now. He said that these employers are mostly looking for skilled and educated workers. 'The more you learn, the more you earn,' Hurd said. 'That's a proven fact. You cannot afford to not learn more skills.'

The next job networking panel hosted at the Parish Hall is set for August 13.

Andy Whitlock says he hopes to bring together another panel of local educators and employers.



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