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Chamber hosts tech speaker

Staff Photo: Frank Reddy. An official with the state technical college system spoke Wednesday to the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce regarding some of the challenges on the horizon for businesses and education.

Staff Photo: Frank Reddy. An official with the state technical college system spoke Wednesday to the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce regarding some of the challenges on the horizon for businesses and education.

An official with the state technical college system spoke Wednesday to the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce regarding some of the challenges on the horizon for businesses and education.

Ronald Jackson, commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia, also talked about the ways in which the work force is changing.

"The workforce today is not a group of people that simply turn wrenches," Jackson said.

"They need to understand highly technical computer skills, they need to understand critical thinking skills ... it's not like it used to be."

Jackson is commissioner for the state agency that oversees the state's technical college, adult literacy and other workforce development programs.

"What the technical college system does particularly well ... they have this close, close relationship with businesses," Jackson said.

Gwinnett Tech President Sharon Bartels introduced Jackson to the group at the chamber luncheon. She said his strong point is that he "tells the truth ... and we can all appreciate that."

As commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia, Jackson oversees 26 state technical colleges that serve more than 190,000 students annually.

The state board appointed Jackson as the system's commissioner Feb. 6, 2008, after he had been serving as the interim commissioner since 2006. He first came to TCSG in 2004 as deputy commissioner.