Message from the CEO

Dear Community Members,

In the beginning, there were 108 community members who participated in the process to develop a new kind of school, centered around community needs and driven by business and industry. A plan was developed, and THINC Academy became a reality, with Kia Motors leading the way.

We opened our doors to students in 2015, and now, we are ready to take it to the next level. Beginning in January 2016, over 50 community members came back together to develop a 3-year strategic plan to guide our work as we move forward to achieve our goals.

Many thanks to all who gave their time, support and ideas to bring this plan to life. Their work is truly appreciated. Please review the plan and know your continued support will be needed. We have big goals, and we expect to be a model of educational transformation and workforce development for Troup County.

We look forward to making a difference in the lives of our students and our community. Please join us in this extraordinary effort and know your support is appreciated.


Gerald Wyatt, CEO

Gerald Wyatt, CEO

THINC College & Career Academy

Strategic Planning Committee

Ashley Adams

Perrin Alford, Provost/COO WGTC*

John Asbell

Monica Barber

Bridget Benefield

Jorderias Brown, THINC Student

Sara Ann Bryant, THINC Student*

*Robby Burch, Director, Customer Care, Interface*

Speer Burdette, President/GM, Callaway Foundation*

Karen Cagle

Dr. Kathy Carlisle, CEO, ThINC*

Bobby Carmichael, Downtown Authority*

Diane Cousins

Patrick Crews, County Commissioner, Troup County*

Steve Daniel

Meghan Duke, Eco. Dev. Director, City of West Point*

Cindy Eggebrecht

Page Estes

Jane Fryer

Kirk Hancock, candidate, Troup County BOE*

Corinne Hodges, Senior Manager, KIA*

Opal Hogg

Randy Jackson, CAO, Kia*

Penny Johnson

Byron Jones, CFO, Troup County School System*

Nate Jung, General Manager, Sewon*

Kim Learnard, Exec. Dir., Dept. Inst. Adv., WGTC*

Chris Lee

Scott Malone, President, Dev. Authority of LaGrange*

Dianne Matthews

Dennis Chip Medders

Charity Miller, Math Instructor, THINC*

Josh Moon, Chairman, West Point Dev. Authority*

Marshall Murray, HOD/Senior Manager, MOBIS*

Shawn Newingham

Leigh Newman

Mark Peevy, Exec. Dir., Sec. Ed Initiatives, TCS GA*

Lucinda Person

Chris Petrick, CEO, Bretford*

Jennifer Pike

Laura Lee Pike

Dr. Cole Pugh, Superintendent, TCSS*

John Radcliffe

Jason Ransbottom, Div. Mgr., Powertech America*

Bob Redding, VP of Sales, Bretford*

Holt Redding, Asst., VP & Controller, Calumet Bank*

Helen Rice, Board Member, Georgia BOE*

Patricia Rogers

Dr. Mardi Schauffler

Yolanda Stephen

Toni Striblin

Julia Stodghill

Jim Thorton, Mayor, City of LaGrange*

Leigh Threadgill, Senior Planner, City of LaGrange*

Kathy Tilley

Chris Turk, SVP Manufacturing & Operations, Interface*

Dr. Chris Williams, Director/Principal, THINC

Renae Willis, VP Bus. Dev. & Marketing, LaGrange-Troup County Chamber*

Mike Young

* Participated in additional sustainability planning

Executive Summary

In early 2006, the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce and Troup County School System recognized the need to ensure the business community was informed about the connection between education and workforce development, and thus the impact on economic development.

The Workforce Development Committee of the Troup County Center for Strategic Planning developed the idea for a career academy as one strategy to improve recruiting, hiring and retention of highly qualified employees. Such a school topped the list of ideas for economic development, and THINC College & Career Academy became a reality.

THINC’s mission is, “to produce work-savvy graduates in an expert-based charter academy using a down-to-business approach to education with authentic hands-on curriculum extending learning beyond the traditional classroom propelled by a sustained community”.

THINC College & Career Academy develops “work savvy” students to have technical and soft skills when entering the workforce or college. These students are desirable to businesses and colleges because they’ve also developed a strong work ethic and critical thinking skills.

In 2015, THINC first opened its doors, and has been a major success. The CEO, Principal and Board recognized the opportunity to take THINC to the next level, and determined the need to develop a strategic plan to inform and guide the school over the next 3 years.

In January 2016, a large group came together to develop the plan. This group included business leaders, board members, Troup County School System and THINC personnel, students, chamber of commerce leaders, and postsecondary partners. Over a period of 4 months, groups met and hammered out a detailed plan that outlines the strategies, action steps, measurable outcomes, deadlines, responsible parties, and resources needed to meet goals.

The bold plan that follows is designed to ensure goals are met or exceeded:

  • Academic and social-emotional growth and achievement of all students
  • All students participate in a continuum of college and career experiences
  • All students leave with college credit, professional certifications, and completion of a capstone project
  • High quality, real-world teaching, integrating technical, academic and soft skills
  • Quality relationships between the Troup County School System, THINC, and the community
  • Growth and replication of THINC to increase the model across the district

Community Support