Miguel Ramirez and Jeremiah Cooper Named
GNTC’s 2017 GOAL and Rick Perkins Award Winners    
Miguel Ramirez, a Business Management student from Rome, was named Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s (GNTC) 2017 Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership (GOAL) winner and Jeremiah Cooper, a Welding and Joining Technology instructor from Ringgold, was selected as the college’s 2017 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.
The winners were named during the Seven Hills Rotary Club meeting at Coosa Country Club on Tuesday, Jan. 31. The awards were sponsored and presented by the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce, the Seven Hills Rotary Club of Rome, and the GNTC Student Leadership Council.
Emily Connell, a resident of Ringgold who was chosen in December to represent Georgia Northwestern at the EAGLE Leadership Institute, was also recognized during the banquet. The Leadership Institute recognizes and honors those students who have demonstrated superior achievement in adult education classes and programs.
Ramirez, GNTC’s GOAL winner, is a student at the Floyd County Campus and was nominated by his instructor, Gerald McFry, director of the Business Management program.
“Miguel always worked hard and excelled at everything he was involved in,” said McFry. “He has never made anything less than an A in every class he has taken.”
Ramirez is currently an Appliance Performer Instructor at Lowes, Inc., and received the Platinum Performer Award from Lowes in 2016. He has volunteered for the Human Rights Campaign, 2015-16, and for Keep Rivers Alive, 2008-09. He was also member of Kiwanis Club, Polk Youth Leadership, Beta Club, Keep Polk Beautiful, and the National Honor Society.
During his junior year in high school, Ramirez had to drop out due to unexpected family events. He obtained his GED© diploma from Georgia Northwestern and went on to attend college at the Floyd County Campus.
“The benefits of attending a technical college are one of the reasons I decided to go back to school,” said Ramirez. “Technical college allows people to be prepared to enter the workforce without running up a lot of student debt.”
Ramirez has made the President’s List each semester at GNTC and has a 4.0 GPA. He works full time and goes to college full time.
“I had economic and personal obstacles that made me put a halt on my dreams of attending college,” said Ramirez. “Thankfully, we have technical colleges that have been designed to turn people’s dream into a reality.”
Jeremiah Cooper, instructor of Welding and Joining Technology on the Walker County Campus, was selected as GNTC’s 2017 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.
Cooper was chosen for his outstanding presentation about the value of technical education.
“Since my first day as a welding instructor at GNTC, I’ve been convinced that this is what I was put on earth to do,” said Cooper. “I wanted to be able to help people and to witness the evolution of a student in their pursuit of a career.”