What does "opportunity" mean to you? To me, it means a combination of circumstances that allows students to prepare themselves for broader experiences. At Georgia Military College, all students have endless opportunities to start with our college and truly go anywhere upon transferring or graduating. I’m happy to report that as we continue to grow, GMC is truly becoming the "school of opportunity" across our state.
Here, our students fall into three categories: first chance, second chance and only chance. For each group, opportunity represents something a bit different. But for all GMC students, it means an accessible and affordable quality education, one that opens the door to so much more. It’s about putting a student on an educational path toward success, which is both our mission and passion.
Let me take a few moments to explain those categories. About 26 percent of our students are traditional first chance students. They have the grades to go to the college or university of their choice, but they’ve chosen GMC because we offer a top quality education at an affordable price. They know their credits will transfer to any of the 41 colleges/universities with whom we have articulation agreements, 35 of which guarantee admission.
Another 19 percent of students are our second chance students. Perhaps they went to their two- or four-year school of choice, but didn’t adjust well or make the grade. They need an opportunity to get their education back on track, and GMC provides that pathway.
For the remaining 55 percent of our students, GMC represents the only chance to advance their education. They might have dropped out of high school and earned a GED; maybe they have very low SAT scores, or face any number of challenges. They know GMC’s open admission policy means not only acceptance, but a true opportunity to change their lives.
The success of our students on a daily basis is paramount to everything we do, and it defines who GMC truly is. From our statewide footprint (including an online program), to small class sizes, from the variety of majors we offer, to free tutoring and donor-supported scholarships, everything is centered on student success. Wow, what an opportunity GMC offers to every student. And the outcome is seen in these examples: Our graduation rate exceeds the national average at comparable colleges, while our transfer rate to four-year schools is twice the national average. With an almost 200 percent growth in the number of graduates in the past six years, word is spreading about GMC’s unparalleled accessibility and affordability.
As you’ll see in the pages of this report, opportunity comes in many forms at GMC, both academically and financially. As I tell our students, if they have the desire and will to succeed, we have set the conditions to make it happen. As donors, you already recognize GMC is a great investment. Through your generosity, you are giving the gift of opportunity to provide our students with hope and the chance for a better life.
Thank you for your loyalty and commitment by continuing to support the next generation of GMC students - and for making our institution a School of Opportunity, no matter how you define it. Together, we are making a difference!
LtGen William Caldwell