Georgia Virtual Technical Connection
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Georgia Virtual Technical Connection is a portal for online instruction in the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG). Established in 1998 as Georgia Virtual Technical College, this online instruction initiative was designed to offer working adults the opportunity to pursue degrees and certifications by eliminating such common problems as scheduling conflicts and lack of proximity to a campus. The school also accommodates growing numbers of students, decreases strain on existing facilities, and provides educational opportunities for rural Georgians.
In its first quarter Georgia Virtual Tech enrolled 132 students in 17 courses. In 2005, 37,112 students were enrolled in 5,808 courses covering 144 programs of study. That same year, the most popular programs at Georgia Virtual Tech were in accounting, allied health, and computer information. Debbie Dlugolenski was director of the Covington-based college from its inception in 1998 until 2006. She was succeeded by Cathy Brock, and in 2009 Robert Keown became executive director. The college's name changed to Georgia Virtual Technical Connection in 2010.
The TCSG, in overseeing the state's system of technical colleges, its economic and workforce development programs, and its adult literacy program, has as its primary objective to create a well-educated, technically trained, and highly competitive workforce to ensure the economic success of the state and its citizens.
As with some other technical colleges governed by the TCSG, Georgia Virtual Tech has an open enrollment policy. Applicants must be at least sixteen years of age. Certain courses and degree programs may have different eligibility and academic requirements. If standards for a certain credit program are met, students can earn an associate degree, an expanded program of study that facilitates career mobility and continuing education at the baccalaureate level; a traditional diploma; or a technical certificate of credit, a short-term targeted program that prepares students for specific jobs.
Georgia Virtual Tech offers both online courses that do not require on-campus class time and hybrid courses that are split between traditional face-to-face and online class time. A variety of programs from each college in the system are available through Georgia Virtual Tech. Students enroll at a "home" institution but may use Georgia Virtual Tech to sign up for online courses at any other college in the TCSG.