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2024 Winter NEWSLETTER

The Benefits of an Associate Degree

Success doesn’t come easy. As an institution created for adult learners, many of Interactive College of Technology’s students are often working one or two full-time
jobs, as well as studying. So why is the Associate of Science degree worth it? Here are
some reasons:

1. An Associate of Science Degree shows that you can finish what you started. You
focused on a goal, satisfied all the course requirements, met expectations,
and succeeded.

2. On a resume, it shows employers that you have the skills they need. It provides
a verified credential that you also have reasoning, planning, and teamwork skills
in addition to the ones you will need for your profession.

3. Statistically, an Associate Degree will help boost your pay, on average, almost $7,904
a year. In addition, professionals with an Associate Degree are twenty five percent
less likely to be unemployed.*

4. Some employers require a degree for hiring. An Associate of Science Degree will
make you eligible for those careers.

5. An Associate of Science Degree can be a stepping stone to other education
milestones. ICT has agreements with Morehouse State College and DeVry University
that allows the credits earned to go toward a Bachelor’s Degree.

Interactive College of Technology has been providing Associate of Science degree programs since 2012. Many of our students are enrolled in a diploma program, however with only a few more credits they too can get the benefits of an Associate
of Science Degree.

* U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

ICT Officer’s List

CEO: Elmer R. Smith
EVP of Enrollment: Gregory A. Koch
EVP of Product Development: Thomas A. Blair
VP, Chamblee Campus: JoAnn Koch

our students are our mission



The 41st Annual Commencement Ceremony at Interactive College of Technology, was held December 3rd, 2023, was a significant and celebratory event. It was held in the Ravinia Ballroom at the Crowne Plaza, in Atlanta, Georgia. The facility held over 1,200 guests and graduates and was an elegant and well-planned ceremony. Many special touches were added by the staff to ensure this day would be memorable. The presence of the Mayor of Chamblee, the Honorable Brian Mock, added a special touch to the ceremony, as he shared an inspiring message with the graduates. The Board of Directors, CEO, faculty, and staff, as well as hundreds of family members acknowledged and celebrated the graduates’ commitment and persistence in pursuing education despite the difficulties brought about by the pandemic. Balancing family life, a career and classwork is no small feat, and class representatives had the opportunity to share their experiences during the ceremony.

Congratulations to all the graduates from the Chamblee, Morrow, and Gainesville campuses for their achievements, especially considering the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.


The Gainesville campus has seen some changes and celebrated some stability as well. The Campus Director recently changed when Director of Educational Bob Faver stepped in as Interim Campus Director. Bob has decades of experience in education, including 11 years as the campus’ Director of Education. He leads a knowledgeable team, including a long-term academic staff. In the last 18-months, the education team has remained stable, with all instructors meeting their academic goals. Under Bob’s leadership along with faculty dedication, Gainesville campus continues to lead the way in
student retention.


The most noticeable change at the Morrow campus is its location. The campus moved from its longtime location to a beautiful office complex at 3000 Corporate Center Way. Students will enjoy a more functional space with plenty of classrooms, break areas, and meeting space. The old location had many challenges. This transition positions the campus into a mode where it can concentrate solely on supporting its students’ educational journeys and ensuring a safe and conducive learning environment. The commitment to enhancing flexibility and addressing concerns underscores the college’s dedication to providing a positive and supportive education experience for all
its students.



The students and staff at Southwest Houston were recently surveyed to find areas of strength and areas for improvement. 89% of the student population participated in the survey. The survey found that the student population on campus is very diverse. Most are working adults trying to upgrade their current job opportunities. 92% of students were satisfied with their instructor’s expertise, timeliness of grades, and class management. 93% said they were happy with their advising support. 90% of online learners were satisfied. Of course, there were areas for improvement. The campus is committed to providing strong customer service and ensuring all students receive the attention they deserve, whether in the classroom or the business office.


The start of a new year is always a good time to take a step back and re-evaluate. So, North Houston’s leadership took up the task of taking a hard look at their college campus. 90% of the student population are virtual. 96% of the students said they were either satisfied or very satisfied with their online classes. 100% said they chose ICT because the affordability of education was important to them, and VESL students were ecstatic about being able to receive Title IV Funding and other financial aid options. However, students also said they needed more help with seeking employment after graduation. The Employment Assistance Coordinator, Cherlyn Latham, is on campus every Tuesday. She not only meets with Occupational students, but provides time to meet and interact with the VESL student body as well.


In Pasadena, many students may feel like they’re going to a whole new campus. Most
of the staff are new and bringing their energy to the campus. The area has recently welcomed a new Campus Director, Aleco Babikian. Aleco has held many top leadership posts and comes to ICT from Florida Career College. He has over 24 years’ experience as an executive in the education industry. He’s joined by Pasadena’s new Director of Education, Jocquelyn Armistad, several new admissions reps, and office staff. These leaders have put a lot of effort into building a strong team to help their students learn and improve their lives. The culture of the campus is growing through a staff that’s focused on the education and graduation of their students.



The Newport Campus has seen a lot of change at the end of the year. The new Campus Director, Leon Gladney, joined the team on September 5th. He was supported and trained by Interim Director Rich Ellison. Leon has decades of experience in the education field.

His energy and humor are infectious and will be a big influence on the culture of the campus. He brought on Dee Hornbeck, who assumed the role of Employment Assistance Coordinator and Interim Registrar. Lindsay Brockman also came on board
as the Admissions Representative for the campus.


Each year, our institutions spend most of the last two months evaluating and
assessing all aspects of the Colleges’ operations. We look at staff and student
surveys, program evaluations, and various plans that are a part of our
accreditation process. We interact with our Program Advisory Committees
and our Institutional Advisory Committee. We look at each of the seven
campus’ individual results, all in an effort to continue improving our
performance toward providing a better experience for our students and our team members. This year’s conference served to remind us of our
overarching mission which must guide us every day.

“Our institutions provide training and certification opportunities for in-demand occupations that lead to well-paying positions. Our goal is to educate and train success-driven men and women, so they are able to find, obtain, and keep better jobs, attain a better life, and be productive citizens of the world.”

This Mission directs our decisions – – and is how we measure success.

While our campuses are all a little different, we are united in pursuing our ultimate goal–Our Student’s Success!


Many students may not know Zirra Dixon, but she plays an incredibly important role at ICT. For the last 24 years, Zirra has worked for Peachtree Credit Company, the owner of most of the college’s student loans. She’s helped thousands of students pay for their education, so they can earn more, and control their student debt.

How did you come to ICT?

In 2000, I was working with AT&T. They moved my division to Utah. My husband said, “You’re not going to Utah.” So, for a career change, I enrolled in ICT. But while
I was at school, a woman I carpooled with was a Work/Study at Peachtree Credit. She said, “can we go see my manager first?”  But during that meeting her manager looked at me and said, “Do you know Excel.” And I said, “yes.” And she asked,
“Do your teachers like you?” I said, “yes.” And when I got to school the next day,
I was told I had a job at
Peachtree Credit.

Why have you stayed at Peachtree for so long?

I stayed because (the manager)
Pam said, “This is what you have to do. Here’s your deadline. If your kids need you, go take care of them. Just get everything done by the deadline.” And my Dad was in the military. So, if you give me a deadline, I’m going to meet it.

What branch did you grow up in?

My Dad was a mechanic in the Air Force. He taught me everything there was to know about a car. So, when I got married, my husband said, “you know all the neighbors are talking about how my wife is out in the driveway working on the car.”  So, I took him out there and let him look like he was doing it.

What do you like about working at Peachtree?

Working with the students. Though we’re asking them to pay a bill, we often develop a relationship with those students. Many of whom we are helping stay in school. 75% of our staff are alumni of ICT, so we understand what
it’s like.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I crochet. I do puzzles. I like working with my hands. I love crafts.

There’s a reason you chose to go to college at ICT. Whether it is the flexible class schedule, location, programs offered, or you knew someone who went here, we are here to help you. We’re also here for any of your friends or family that need to learn Vocational ESL or change their career.

If you know someone who wants to learn more so they can earn more, come by admissions or give the campus a call. We can help more people together.

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