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Thumbs Up! - Jan. 14, 2013

Editorial

Baseball season has yet to arrive but the sport is already in the local news. Deerfield star shortstop Harris Webb got a letter last week informing him that he had been chosen to play in the Under Armour Preseason All-American Tournament in Tucson, Arizona. The games will be played later this month at the Chicago White Sox spring training facility and feature some of the very best high school players from across the nation. Congratulations are in order for this prestigious selection.

Ask just about anyone associated with education these days and they know exacting what the letters “STEM” stand for. One of the greatest current challenges in public schools, technical colleges and universities is keeping up with advancements in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). At a quite rapid pace, these fields are becoming must-haves in schools and those proficient in the areas are becoming the most popular of all candidates in the job market. Albany Technical College currently has three Engineering Technology (ET) programs including Electromechanical Engineering Technology, Civil Engineering Technology and Telecommunications Engineering Technology. A recent grant of $5,000 from Georgia Power will allow ATC to provide scholarships/book stipends for students enrolled in one of the three ET programs. Thank you, Georgia Power.

Sponsored by the Albany Police Department, the Albany Fire Department and the Albany Recreation and Parks Department, a special event is planned for senior citizens on Valentine’s Day. Residents are invited to attend the Valentine’s Day Bingo Breakfast at the Albany Civic Center that day from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. Tickets are an affordable $5 for singles and $8 for couples. Call (229) 430-5222 for more information on this event that is guaranteed to make the day special.

The opportunity to serve on one or more boards or authorities within the city is at hand. With the deadline arriving tomorrow (Jan. 15), there is still time to apply. A letter and resume can be delivered to the Government Center or emailed to stolbert@albany.ga.us or faxed to (229)878-3198. A variety of vacancies are awaiting qualified and willing citizens to fill them. The empty spots include the Albany-Dougherty Inner City Authority, Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful, the Barrier Free Design Board and more. Each of the appointments are important and need dedicated folks to serve. Think seriously, but quickly, about what role you can play in just how Albany operates.

There were smiles all around as the 27th session of the Albany Police Department’s Citizen Police Academy graduates gathered at the Law Enforcement Center last Tuesday. The grads attended classes, observed officers on their jobs and came away with a greater knowledge of just what it is the department does on a daily basis. Those completing the academy are now equipped to tell others about the department and influence how officers are perceived in the community as well as be the much-needed eyes and ears against crime. To this most recent group, and all that came before, your time was well spent.

Only two buildings in the state are named after the founder of Albany State University, Dr. J.W. Holley. One of them is a hall on campus and the other is an old school in Sylvester. Representatives from ASU have been in communication with the Worth County Board of Education and have expressed an interest in partnering with the board to salvage the school for a community center. The redevelopment of the property would allow ASU to offer adult education classes and other programs all the while keeping Holley’s legacy alive. Sounds like a win-win situation if ever there was one.