Press Release

Atlanta Tech’s Unique Bunch named 2014 Adult Education Student of the Year

(l-r) Commissioner Ron Jackson, Unique Bunch, and Atlanta Technical College President Dr. Alvetta Peterman Thomas

Atlanta – Unique Bunch, an adult education student at Atlanta Technical College, has been named the Technical College System of Georgia’s 2014 Adult Education Student of the Year.

The award was announced during an event at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Atlanta on March 27, 2014.

Each March, the Technical College System of Georgia presents 28 adult learners with the EAGLE (Exceptional Adult Georgian in Literacy Education) Award for outstanding achievement in adult education programs. More than 71,000 men and women took part in Georgia’s adult education programs last year, and 15,450 received their GED credential. Twenty-eight are honored at the annual luncheon for overcoming obstacles that once stood in the way of their education.

This year, TCSG Commissioner Ron Jackson and Beverly Smith, the TCSG assistant commissioner for adult education, presented the EAGLE statues to the honorees. Jackson praised the students for their achievement and asked them to share their positive message in their respective counties. “Your success makes you great role models for the 1.2 million adults in Georgia who still do not possess a high school diploma. We need you to spread the word to your fellow Georgians that obtaining a GED credential is an important step toward discovering your potential, getting a better job, and improving the future for you, your family and your community. ”

Jackson then announced that a panel of judges from business and education had selected Unique Bunch, the EAGLE delegate from Atlanta Technical College, as the TCSG’s 2014 Adult Education Student of the Year.

Bunch, an 18 year-old native of Lansing, Michigan, moved to Atlanta two years ago after issues in her personal life distracted her from reaching her full potential. When she arrived in Atlanta, Bunch connected with the Atlanta Workforce Development Agency (AWDA), an arm of the City of Atlanta that provides services and training to help citizens prepare for and secure employment. In turn, AWDA connected her with Atlanta Technical College, its partner in several initiatives designed to help students earn a GED® and get on the path to meaningful employment. Three weeks after enrolling in the adult education program at the college, Bunch had a GED®.

She is currently enrolled in the Police Cadet Academy and will begin the Atlanta Technical College criminal justice program in May. Her ultimate goal is to become an FBI agent.

As the 2014 Adult Education Student of the Year, Bunch receives the new 2014 Mitsubishi Lancer ES that was donated by Jeff Smith, the owner of the Jeff Smith Mitsubishi, Chevrolet and Ford dealerships in Byron, Georgia; the Jeff Smith Kia and Dodge Chrysler Jeep in dealerships in Perry; and the Jeff Smith Automotive Group in Warner Robins.

This is the second consecutive year that Smith has provided a car for the state’s top adult education student. “We can’t thank Jeff Smith enough for his many years of support of technical and adult education in middle Georgia and another generous donation of the grand prize for the EAGLE Award program. His gift is a wonderful way to acknowledge not only the accomplishments of Unique Bunch, but also all the people like her who are realizing new opportunities through Georgia’s adult education program. These are people who we admire greatly because they’re working very hard to improve their lives and careers,” said Jackson.

Over the coming year, Bunch will travel the state in her new car while she serves as the Georgia’s EAGLE ambassador for adult education. She will be speaking to students, civic groups, legislators and others about lifelong learning and the importance of earning a GED credential.

The runner-up for the adult education student of the year is Jennifer Crawford from Altamaha Technical College.

For photos from the 2014 EAGLE Awards, go to https://tcsg.edu/gallery/?p=3146

Here is the complete list of the 28 EAGLE delegates for 2014 and the TCSG college, school system or local authority that delivers their adult education and GED program:

Jordan Seymore, Albany Technical College

Jennifer Crawford, Altamaha Technical College

Markey Walker, Athens Technical College

Sarah Roberts, Atlanta Public Schools

Unique Bunch, Atlanta Technical College

Shannon Funk, Augusta Technical College

LaNeida Davis, Central Georgia Technical College

Marlee Hardin, Chattahoochee Technical College

Fay Lindo, Clayton County Public Schools

Barbara Baker, Cobb County School District

Carrie Freeman, Columbus Technical College

Ru Zhen Zou, Georgia Northwestern Technical College

Cruz Perez, Georgia Piedmont Technical College

Syedah Hill, Gwinnett Technical College

Blanca Ramirez, Lanier Technical College

Regina Hendrix, Literacy Action, Inc.

Christopher Moore, Moultrie Technical College

Gabrielle Kitchens, North Georgia Technical College

Nathaniel Ebner, Oconee Fall Line Technical College

Alaina Ingram, Ogeechee Technical College

Nina Garcia, Okefenokee Technical College

Madeleine Coakley, Savannah Technical College

Connie Sewell, South Georgia Technical College

Norma McKuhen, Southeastern Technical College

Elizabeth Tucker, Southern Crescent Technical College

Daniel Betts, Southwest Georgia Technical College

Luralee Jones, West Georgia Technical College

Mary Byron, Wiregrass Georgia Technical College

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