Piedmont, North Georgia Technical College collaborate on photography programs

By JANIE HARRIS

What would you do if you began a two year degree at a two year institution and then decided you wanted to get a four year degree? 

It would be a difficult process. You would have to find a school that allows you to transfer over all of your classes, and you would probably have to take a number of classes over again.

Well, Piedmont and North Georgia Technical College (NGTC) just made it a bit easier for photography students to get that bachelor’s degree after completing their associate degree. 

Over the summer, professors from both NGTC and Piedmont College sat down to discuss the possible articulation of photography programs.

Articulating programs means they examined the classes at each school and laid out a road map of classes to take for future photography students to that decide to attend Piedmont after completing their associate degree at NGTC.  

Chris Kelly, the chair of the department of art for Piedmont, was one of the professors involved in this articulation. 

Kelly explained how the two photography programs are very different. 

NGTC focuses on commercially based photography, while Piedmont focuses more on the fine arts side of photography. 

NGTC’s program is created to allow their students to graduate with an associate degree and have the skills to shoot wedding portraits, product shots and more.  

Piedmont’s program allows the students to get more of a history of photography and the language of art. 

Jeff Gulle, a photography instructor at NGTC involved in the process, said that each photography student at NGTC needs 19 credits to graduate. 

“Students come here from North Georgia with a strong photography background. They will leave here with a strong art and liberal arts background,” said Gulle.

The students coming to Piedmont from NGTC will still have to meet the general education requirements that any other student would. 

 “We believe our goals are the same: to put out a qualified graduate who will be a vital part of our photographic work environment,” said Gulle.

Kelly also explained that one of the reasons NGTC approached Piedmont with this idea was to give their students an extra opportunity. 

Gulle said there was specifically one student who was struggling with where she was going to go after NGTC. When she found out about this program, she was excited.

NGTC was the first technical college in the state of Georgia and photography was one of the first programs created there in the 1940s.  

It still is one of the largest technical college campuses and is the only one that has dormitory buildings for students. 

“It is a great deal for both schools.  Students can get their core done and get an associate degree from NGTC then get their bachelor’s at Piedmont,” said Gulle.