Shuman And Holmes Named GNTC’s 2014 GOAL And Rick Perkins Award Winners

Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Kenneth Shuman, right, 2014 GOAL Winner, Donny Holmes, left, Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year at GNTC, and Pete McDonald, center, president of GNTC.
Kenneth Shuman, right, 2014 GOAL Winner, Donny Holmes, left, Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year at GNTC, and Pete McDonald, center, president of GNTC.

Kenneth Shuman has been selected as Georgia Northwestern Technical College's 2014 GOAL Winner and Donny Holmes has been named the college’s 2014 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.

The winners were named during the Seven Hills Rotary Club meeting at Coosa Country Club on Tuesday. 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. 

Ru Zhen Zou of Floyd County, who was chosen in November to represent GNTC at the EAGLE Leadership Institute, was also recognized during the meeting and presented with the EAGLE trophy. The Leadership Institute recognizes and honors those students who have demonstrated superior achievement in adult education classes and programs.

Mr. Shuman, GNTC’s GOAL winner, is a Marketing student at GNTC’s Floyd County Campus and was nominated by his instructor, Mark Upton. He was selected from a group of four semi-finalists for his presentation on technical education by a panel of judges representing business, industry, and higher education in Northwest Georgia.

“Kenneth is a diligent student, personable, a leader, and a mentor to other students in the classroom,” said Mr. Upton. 

Mr. Shuman graduated in 2003 from Habersham Central High School in Mount Airy and was Biology Student of the Year there in 2002. He currently serves as the vice president of Phi Beta Lambda on the Floyd County Campus and is attending GNTC on the Friends of Alfred and Martha Shorter Scholarship.  Mr. Shuman remains very active in the community by performing volunteer work for numerous organizations including North Bartow Community Services, Inc., March of Dimes, the Facing Hope Project, and Relay for Life. He is the owner and operator of Treasure Cove Upscale Consignment Store in Calhoun.

“Technical education is very important to me because it focuses on the community," said Mr. Shuman.  "Through workforce development, technical college’s work with local businesses to tailor their programs to give individuals the skill sets that they need to succeed in local industry.  Not only does this benefit the individual, it benefits the community as a whole.”

As the 2014 GOAL Winner for Georgia Northwestern, Mr. Shuman will move to the regional competition and if he is chosen as a regional winner, he will compete at the state level against winners from the other regions of Georgia. He will receive an all-expense-paid trip to Atlanta in April. A panel of leaders from business, industry, and government will choose the Technical College System of Georgia’s GOAL winner for 2014 and recipient of the GOAL medallion. The grand prize also includes a new automobile for the winner to travel around Georgia. The 2014 Student of the Year and state GOAL winner will serve as TCSG’s student ambassador during a number of system and college functions throughout the year.

Donny Holmes, Construction Management program director on the Gordon County Campus, was selected as GNTC’s 2014 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year. Mr. Holmes also is the program director of Residential Energy Efficiency Technology at GNTC.

Mr. Holmes was chosen for his outstanding presentation about the value of technical education.

When asked why he chose to teach at GNTC, Mr. Holmes answered “I chose to teach in a technical college because I love to communicate my knowledge and experiences of construction to those wanting to learn so that they, in turn, can experience pride and accomplishment by building Georgia.  It is always rewarding to see a student learn to build, trim, estimate, and schedule a construction project, all while receiving an affordable education that will greatly impact the community that they are in.” 

Mr. Holmes has been an instructor at Georgia Northwestern since 2005. Prior to joining GNTC, he was a project manager for MECO Builders, Inc., in Chatsworth; estimator at Dalton Paving and Construction in Dalton; project manager and estimator at Downey Metal Products in Calhoun; project engineer at The BECK Group in Atlanta; AutoCAD and Drafting Night Classes instructor at Coosa Valley Technical College in Calhoun; design/draftsman at Harbison-Walker Refractories Co. in Calhoun; and computer draftsman at Durkan Patterned Carpet in Dalton.

Mr. Holmes received a bachelor’s degree in Construction Engineering/Management from Southern Polytechnic State University and an associate of applied science degree in Technology, Drafting and Design Technology from Dalton College. Mr. Holmes also has a certificate in Construction Safety and Health from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He holds many certifications including Earth Craft House Builder/Renovator Certification, BPI Building Analyst Professional, BPI Building Envelope Professional, G-PRO Certificate in Fundamentals of Building Green and Construction Management, OSHA Course 502 Construction Industry Outreach Trainer, OSHA 30 Hour Construction Card, and Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission Level IA Certification. Mr. Holmes is an elder at Rock Bridge Community Church in Calhoun.

"Donny truly exemplifies both commitment and dedication to his profession," said Beverly Padgett, GNTC Rick Perkins coordinator.  "He truly enjoys his field of instruction and it comes across with both his students and his peers.  He is an asset to GNTC and well deserving of this honor.”

As GNTC’s Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year, Mr. Holmes will compete in the regional competition. If chosen as a regional winner, he will compete at the state level in the competition. A panel of leaders from business, industry, and government will choose one instructor to be the 2014 Technical College System of Georgia’s Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year. The winner will receive a $1,000 cash prize.

The Rick Perkins Award winner serves as an ambassador for technical education in Georgia. He or she will make many public appearances throughout the year. 

The last state winners to represent Georgia Northwestern Technical College were 2013 Rick Perkin’s winner, Troy Peco, and 1993 GOAL winner, Robin Hood Hutson. 

Ru Zhen Zou, winner of GNTC’s EAGLE Award
Ru Zhen Zou, winner of GNTC’s EAGLE Award


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