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Pictured (left to right): VP of Academic Affairs Dr. Ben Worth, President of MGCC Dr. John Rainone, MGCC Information Systems Technology Program Head Tamra Lipscomb, and Superintendent of Alleghany Highlands Public Schools Kim Halterman.

VDOE Approves MG-TEC Lab School; More IT opportunities for local high school students

Clifton Forge, VA (March 28, 2024) - A major decision for education advancement and opportunity in Southwest Virginia: the Virginia Department of Education has officially approved plans for an MG-TEC Lab School at Mountain Gateway Community College.

“MG-TEC is the culmination of a strong partnership between Mountain Gateway Community College, our business and industry partners, and the school districts in our service area,” said Dr. Ben Worth, Vice President of Academic Affairs. “We thank all the superintendents, principals, and school board members for their strong support."

Our region faces a stark reality where many high school graduates are at risk of entering the poverty index due to limited educational and career prospects. The IT industry's rapid growth, with a projected 11% increase in jobs from 2019 to 2029, as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, presents a unique opportunity to transform the lives of these young individuals. Sadly, many students often lack access to the resources, support, and mentorship needed to break free from the cycle of poverty.

MG-TEC is designed to empower high school students with a comprehensive education in Information Technology (IT). Our initiative enables these students to earn community college credentials, including a pathway to an associate degree in Information Systems Technology, along with industry-leading certifications.

"MG-TEC offers three pathways into IT careers: Cybersecurity, Cloud Computing, and IT Technical Support, providing students with valuable skills and an opportunity to earn industry certifications that will provide an immediate entry into the workforce,” said Tamra Lipscomb, MGCC Information Systems Technology Program Head.

MG-TEC Lab School will open to high school sophomores, juniors and seniors starting Fall 2024. Upon completing their chosen pathway, students will receive an industry-recognized certificate, putting them on the fast track to a career in IT right out of high school.

“In a world driven by technology, the demand for IT professionals is universal, spanning industries from finance to healthcare. By preparing our students, MG-TEC ensures our community has the skilled workforce needed to support local businesses while offering students impressive starting wages," said Lipscomb.

Students will be able to take classes on campus utilizing the Governor’s School Transportation network. HyFlex attendance is also possible through Zoom or asynchronously for students who aren’t able to come to campus.

For more information about MG-TEC Lab School, contact Tamra Lipscomb, MGCC Information Systems Technology Program Head, at tlipscomb@mgcc.edu or 540-863-2896.


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