SRTC teacher named Technical College System of Georgia Outstanding Adult Education Teacher of the Year

Mar. 28—THOMASVILLE — Rhea Brashear, an instructor in the Adult Education program at Southern Regional Technical College, has been awarded the title of 2024 Outstanding Adult Education Teacher of the Year by the Technical College System of Georgia. This recognition celebrates Brashear's outstanding dedication, innovation, and impact in the field of adult education.

TCSG Commissioner Greg Dozier presented Brashear with the Adult Education Teacher of the Year and a check for $2,500 during a banquet held on March 26 in Atlanta.

Brashear was selected from among four finalists for the award by a panel of judges representing business, industry, and higher education in Georgia, SRTC said in a press release. Selection criteria included teaching experience, leadership abilities and professionalism, proven innovation in teaching techniques, community involvement, and a strong commitment to adult education.

For the next year, Brashear will serve as the technical college system's ambassador for adult education and a representative of her fellow instructors at Georgia's 22 technical colleges, SRTC said. She will make numerous appearances around Georgia to speak about the great opportunities offered by the technical college system. She will also be honored by the Georgia General Assembly and receive a personal commendation from the governor.

"Brashear's commitment to her students' education has set a remarkable standard within SRTC's Adult Education program," SRTC said. "Her passion for teaching has not only transformed the lives of countless students but also elevated the standards of adult education within the state."

Jim Glass, president of Southern Regional Technical College, said, "Rhea truly plays a positive and pivotal role in helping each student realize their dream."

Brashear has been an educator her entire career, beginning as the owner of a home-based developmental assessment and tutoring program. She began working with Adult Education students at SRTC-Thomasville in 2021. In 2023, she earned her Student Achievement in Reading (STAR) Certification, a rigorous professional development initiative for adult reading instruction created by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education. Brashear also serves as the Vice-Chair of Literacy for Thomas County, a local Certified Literate Community program, and as the Adult Education Program Representative on the Thomasville Chamber of Commerce Workforce Plan.

Brashear says, "New students often walk into my classroom with a feeling of disillusionment and discouragement. My first job as an educator is to help my students develop a sense of excitement and awe about their education."

The Adult Education Teacher of the Year is a highly competitive award, which honors excellence in adult basic education. The Adult Education program at SRTC offers Adult Literacy, Career Training, English Language, and GED test preparation classes in math, science, social studies and English language arts. Adult Education services are free and available at various locations in Colquitt, Decatur, Early, Grady, Miller, Mitchell, Seminole, Thomas, Tift, Turner, and Worth counties.