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Central Gwinnett High School Film Students Create Promo Video For the Georgia Manufacturing Summit

Central Gwinnett recognizes student video

Central Gwinnett High School Film Students Create Promo Video For the Georgia Manufacturing Summit

October 16, 2017

Central Gwinnett HS students left to right:Robert Sima, Nigel McGee, and Jakcob Zelaya

Lawrenceville, GA – This fall, students at Central Gwinnett High School are getting the opportunity to create real commercial projects thanks to a partnership between The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance and Central Gwinnett’s Fine Arts and Communications Academy. The students recently completed a 60 second video promoting the Georgia Manufacturing Summit, which is scheduled for October 25th at the Cobb Galleria. To see the students’ video, please watch this link:

     As Central Gwinnett High School celebrates its 60th year, the school is constantly making changes and improvements to provide the best educational options for its students. Several years ago, Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) transformed seven of its high schools into College and Career Academy Schools. Central Gwinnett High became one of the schools adopting this new structure of education. As a College and Career Academy, the school is committed to providing students with advanced skills needed to be successful, productive citizens in college, career, and life. The Academy model uses innovative practices to ensure students receive the highest level of education and exposure to post-secondary education, career opportunities, and real-life experiences.

     Nathaniel Thomas McGill, an industry partner of the Fine Arts and Communications Advisory Board adds, “Giving students real work experience is a large part of this model. It’s been well documented that the film industry has become one of the largest opportunities for the future workforce in Georgia. Giving students at Central Gwinnett High opportunities to work for companies and organizations that need that type of video production is what we are always looking for,” McGill said. “I became a teacher at Central Gwinnett High believing I could make a difference in the lives of students that want to work in the film industry one day.” Now known as Mr. McGill to his students, the Audio/Video Technology and Film (AVTF) program has become a place where students can learn from the filmmaker’s experience and learn the lessons that will help them get a job in Georgia’s growing film industry.

     Jason Moss, the CEO at Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, first met with the instructor of Central Gwinnett High’s AVTF program when McGill was producing American Made Movie, a feature documentary that went to theaters in 2013. Since then, the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance has grown by leaps and bounds and has been the leading voice in Georgia’s manufacturing community. With that growth, the need to promote its events has also grown. The company will typically hire video producers to create its commercial content. Together, McGill and Moss discussed what it might look like if students at Central Gwinnett High were given the opportunity to produce the content needed. In exchange, the students gain priceless industry experience and knowledge. Thanks to the Academy school model, partnerships like this one have become a great tool for increasing workforce development and educating students for real jobs in the community.

     “The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance is hosting the third annual Georgia Manufacturing Summit to help industry experts learn about changing trends that will impact their business,” Moss said.  “We needed a video promotion to highlight our Summit, and we wanted Central Gwinnett High students to gain real-world experience by creating a video for an event that attracts more than 700 people from around the Southeast.” To learn more about the Summit, please visit

     McGill adds, “When we heard the need for a promotional video, I immediately knew that my students could deliver the project based on what we have been learning in class. Three students stepped into the roles needed. Producing student, Nigel McGee, and editing students, Robert Sima and Jakcob Zelaya, volunteered for the special project-based learning assignment,” McGill said. “This is a real event that includes keynote speakers, Debra Shankle, V.P. of Supply Chain for Coca-Cola North America, and Rob Dugas, the Chief Procurement Officer and V.P. of Chick-fil-A, who will address the Manufacturing Trends to Track for 2018. Having the students work on a commercial project that includes those major brands, also helps them when they have this finished work to present to employers and for college admissions.” 

     Moss went on to say, “This project has helped expand what they will be able to use in a portfolio for future employers. We are excited to continue this partnership because our entire organization is based on promoting workforce development, and through this partnership we get to reach future workers early and have an impact on them while they are still in high school.”

     McGill is a big supporter saying, “The best thing we can do for our students is give them the validation that they can perform well in the industry. It is incredibly satisfying for the students to know they have successfully delivered a project that would have cost that partner thousands of dollars to create with a professional. We are extremely happy about our partnership with GMA. They are actively finding new methods and projects to not only help our students produce real world content, but they are also helping fund some of our projects. The future of the partnership is looking very bright and I am sure that we will have more to announce in the coming months,” McGill said.




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