Newton resident named Georgia Piedmont’s top instructor in 2022

COVINGTON, Ga. — Georgia Piedmont Technical College has named a Newton County resident as the winner of the Instructor of the Year award for the second time.

Sherry Lowery has won Georgia Piedmont’s Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Education for 2022, the college announced.

Lowery, who teaches classes in early childhood care and education, won the annual award for the second time after his first win in 2015.

Professors are nominated by their peers each year. Lowery, 64, said she was shocked and honored for her nomination and eventual second win

“My nominator is actually a work-study student in the (Early Childhood) program who has taken all of the courses I teach here in college. I also appreciate being able to represent my faculty peers in this venture, Lowery said.

Lowery is also the founder of 100 Women Who Care Newton County, which works to raise funds for nonprofits in the area.

The college also named its GOAL (Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership) winner as student Natasha Henry, 25, of DeKalb County.

As winners of Georgia Piedmont Technical College, Lowery and Henry will continue to compete on the regional stage in March. If named the winners, they will compete at the state level in April.

State winners will be ambassadors for technical education throughout the Peach State, including addressing the General Assembly.

Lowery said she would highlight the value of a technical education in speeches if named the state honoree.

“If given the opportunity, I wouldn’t hesitate to mention that our programs are accredited, foundational, personal, and in many cases, free. Our students are sought after, highly respected and employed.”

Henry doesn’t hesitate when asked what she hopes to do with her air conditioning technology degree.

“My ultimate goal is to do religious disaster relief,” Henry said, appealing to his strong faith as a Jehovah’s Witness.

Henry is honing his home building skills and would eventually like to start his own HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) business specializing in helping those affected by natural disasters.

Henry is due to complete his program at GPTC in May; she also holds an associate degree from Georgia State University.

The GOAL and Perkins award winners will both receive checks for $500 from the GPTC Foundation, in addition to enjoying their own parking spots during their one-year reign.

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