VALDOSTA -- They came, saw and gained new insights on possible career plans.

Students from about four area school systems toured Valdosta Technical College Thursday morning for a couple of hours of the college experience.

Guided by VTC students, the 100 high school juniors and seniors from Brooks County, Lanier County, Lowndes County and Valdosta City schools walked through various technical classrooms, gaining brief overviews of each of the nine technical programs the college offers, such as automotive technology, cosmetology, horticulture and welding.

This is at least the second time VTC has allowed high school students to visit the campus.

"It's a way to show students and parents what the college has to offer," tech prep coordinator Brooke Brantley said. She added that few people realize all the college offers, hearing only about certain programs such as cosmetology. One of the courses non-students aren't fully aware of is Advanced Machine Tool Technology, a course that teaches students to make parts for various machinery.

During the morning, the students split into smaller groups, walked through the classrooms and asked the instructors questions. The instructors provided the students with such information as how long it takes for students to become certified, what they could do with their areas of study, and how much money they could expect to make upon graduation.

Tony Hicks, a senior at Lowndes County High School, said he learned a lot while touring the campus. He found the automotive class one of the most interesting.

"I didn't know there was so much involved in those courses," he said.

To contact reporter Marie Arrington, please call 244-3400, ext. 254.

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