Wiregrass Georgia Technical College Welding Instructor Wins Top Honor

VALDOSTA, GA—The Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) today announced the state’s top technical college instructor for 2020. Mike Day, a Welding and Joining Technology instructor from Wiregrass Georgia Technical College was chosen as the winner of this year’s Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Instruction.

Mike Day Wiregrass Tech
Mike Day

“Mike embodies everything you want in an outstanding instructor—a passion for teaching, expertise in their field, and most importantly, a love for their students,” said TCSG Commissioner, Greg Dozier. “I know everyone at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College and TCSG is extremely proud to have Mike represent the very best of technical education in Georgia.”

The Rick Perkins Award, now in its 29th year, highlights excellence in technical instruction and recognizes the most outstanding instructors at the 22 TCSG colleges. As the award winner, Mike Day will make public appearances as a representative for technical education during the next year, including meeting with Governor Brian Kemp and addressing the Georgia General Assembly.

Each year, selection for the Rick Perkins Award begins with the naming of the top technical education instructors at each college. Regional competitions follow and narrow the field to nine finalists for the award. Due to the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, a panel of judges interviewed this year’s nine finalists virtually.  

“We are so excited that Mike was named the 2020 Rick Perkins Award State Winner,” said Wiregrass Georgia Technical College President, Dr. Tina Anderson. “He loves his students, our mission, and will do a tremendous job representing TCSG and its instructors over the next year.” 

As the 2020 Rick Perkins award winner, Mike Day from Wiregrass Georgia Technical College received a crystal award and a check for $1,000. The first runner-up for instructor of the year was Kelley Braxton, a Respiratory Care instructor from Oconee Fall Line Technical College.  

The nine 2020 Rick Perkins Award finalists were:

  • Annette Baker, Lanier Technical College
  • Kelley Braxton, Oconee Fall Line Technical College
  • Dana Buxton, Athens Technical College
  • Mike Day, Wiregrass Georgia Technical College
  • Amy Dorminey, Ogeechee Technical College
  • Mandy Jones, Georgia Northwestern Technical College
  • Beverly Kirk, West Georgia Technical College
  • Dorothea Lusane-McKenzie, South Georgia Technical College
  • Jessica Willcox, Central Georgia Technical College


About the Technical College System of Georgia

The 22 colleges of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) are Georgia’s top resource for skilled workers. TCSG offers world-class training in 600 associate degree, diploma and certificate programs to students who are trained on state-of-the-art equipment by instructors who are experts in their fields. The system also houses Georgia’s Office of Adult Education, which promotes and provides adult literacy and education programs, including the GED testing program, throughout the state. In addition, TCSG partners with companies through Quick Start, the nation’s top customized workforce training program, and through its individual colleges, to work with local industry to provide workforce and training solutions. For more information, visit www.TCSG.edu.

Mark D’Alessio


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