Record number of students graduate HGTC - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Record number of students graduate HGTC

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CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - The largest class of graduating students ever walked the stage at the commencement ceremony for Horry Georgetown Technical College Thursday evening.

Thirteen-hundred HGTC students graduated - a huge percentage of them already have bachelor's degrees. They come to HGTC seeking a more specialized degree, because often they aren't able to get a job in the field they majored in.

Many students at HGTC have families and already have a job, but they want to pursue a different career. The good news for them: last year, 94 percent of the school's graduates had jobs upon graduation or were transferring to complete another degree.

HGTC has 90 certification programs and offers associate degrees. The graduation to employment percentage is so high because of the way the curriculum is designed.

Many students are required to do an internship before they graduate. Nine times out of 10, those students are hired by the company they interned for.

"They are into the work force," says HGTC's Senior Vice President Marilyn Fore. "They are here for upgrading, or they're here to finish a degree that is going to place them into a job. First, we don't offer any programs for which there are no jobs. So the student is able to make application. References are given, and they are secured a position with whatever training they have received from here."

Many of the companies that hire students upon graduation often invest in them further. They'll send the students back to school to complete a four-year degree and foot the bill.

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