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Gadsden State technical students receive national scholarship

Thirty-five students nationwide were awarded a scholarship from the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute. Two of them are Gadsden State Community College students.

David Plunkett of Anniston and Jimmie Sides of Weaver were awarded Clifford H. “Ted” Rees Jr. Scholarships. Plunkett was awarded a $1,500 scholarship and Sides won a $2,000 scholarship to continue studying to become technicians in the HVACR and water heating industry.

David Plunkett

David Plunkett

Jimmie Sides

Jimmie Sides

“We are proud to help these qualified and dedicated students as we promote careers in the HVACR and water heating industry,” said Stephen Yurek, president and CEO of AHRI. “We are helping to close the employment and skills gaps we currently face. We wish these students success in their programs and look forward to welcoming them into the industry.”

Tim Green, dean of technical education and workforce development, said, “Plunkett and Weaver are two of six Gadsden State students to be awarded the scholarships since 2013.”

“Consistently having Rees Scholarship winners is proof that Gadsden State’s technical programs produce quality students who can compete on a national level,” he said. “Furthermore, we have superior instructors who lead our students to bright careers in industries such as HVACR, electronics engineering and automotive/ industrial automation.”

Green said, “The Rees Scholarship Foundation and AHRI should be commended for supporting technical students.  Their positive impact on these students’ lives by providing financial support to continue their education cannot be overestimated.”  “These scholarships also make the HVACR and water heating industry more attractive to high-caliber students who might not otherwise consider a technical career.”

The overall mission of the Rees Scholarship Foundation is to increase the professional qualifications of employees by promoting careers in the industry and greater technical expertise by assisting with the education, recruitment and competency of future HVACR and water heating technicians. In total $60,500 in Rees scholarships were awarded. Since its inception in 2003, the Rees Scholarship Foundation has awarded almost $440,000 in scholarships to more than 250 students and instructors.

The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Program at Gadsden State is taught by Joe Hulsey on the Ayers Campus and Tim Hardy on the Valley Street Campus.

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