Melissa Smiley selected as Savannah Tech’s 2018 Adult Education student of the year

Melissa Smiley headshot EAGLE 2018

SAVANNAH, Ga. – Melissa Smiley has been selected as the 2018 Savannah Technical College Exceptional Adult Georgian in Literacy Education (EAGLE) recipient.

Smiley earned her GED in December 2017 and is now as a business management full-time student at the College. Her classmates describe her as a caring and motivating person.  She is truly adored by her classmates and her instructor, Mr. Gaines: “Ms. Smiley’s impeccable skills, her willingness to help others and her desire to earn her GED set a beautiful example for the entire class.”

In her spare time she loves spending time with her two sons, Tyler and Kyle, who she says inspire her to do better. Melissa’s ultimate goal is to establish a career in Healthcare Administration. She was born in Savannah, Georgia and now calls Rincon, Ga. home.

“Ms. Smiley is the image of the very best in adult education: mature, intelligent, hard-working, humble and determined,” said STC’s Vice President of Adult Education Dr. Brent Stubbs. “We are so proud of her and believe she will represent the college well.”

The EAGLE Leadership Institute recognizes and honors those students who have demonstrated superior achievement in adult education classes. Selection criteria include student character, attitude, attendance, leadership and community involvement and activities. From this group, one student is selected to represent the local program at the state EAGLE Leadership Institute. The Institute provides workshops in leadership topics to build on the strong leadership characteristics the student already exhibits.

EAGLE is the first statewide program in the nation that recognizes and rewards excellence among students enrolled in adult education programs. This student recognition program is designed to create greater awareness of educational opportunities available in local communities across the state and to foster greater involvement in lifelong learning pursuits.

Every EAGLE delegate is considered an ambassador and spokesperson for literacy serving local communities and the state by promoting lifelong learning. Since its inception in 1993, the EAGLE Award program has recognized more than 1,600 outstanding students across the state. In additional to serving as volunteer role models for family members, friends, neighbors and co-workers, EAGLE delegates serve as mentors, peer tutors, and recruiters of other students into local adult education programs. The Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) through its Office of Adult Education sponsors the annual EAGLE Leadership Institute.

Savannah Tech’s Adult Education Program serves those who need to improve their basic literacy and math skills, improve their oral and written English, practice for the GED® test to attain a high school equivalency degree, and prepare for college. Instructors also help students with science and social studies test preparation for GED® testing. STC teaches adult education classes in the morning, afternoon, evening and online. They are offered in Bryan, Chatham, Effingham and Liberty Counties with multiple locations in each community. Adult education classes for GED®-prep are currently free for all U.S. citizens. To register for free GED® classes, call 912.443.5446 or visit For GED® testing information, go to to sign up to take test or go to to learn more about our testing locations.

Savannah Technical College serves Coastal Georgia with quality, market-driven technical education with campus locations in Chatham, Effingham and Liberty Counties. Serving more than 10,000 credit and non-credit students annually, Savannah Tech offers nearly 150 different instructional programs in Aviation Technology, Business and Technology, Public Service, Industrial Technology, and Health Sciences in addition to Adult Education classes, industry-specific training and continuing education. The College serves as an economic and community development partner for the region, offering corporate and customized training and assessment programs for business and industry. 

Savannah Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award the associate degree, diplomas, and technical certificates of credit. Contact SACSCOC for questions about the accreditation of Savannah Technical College. All questions about admission, enrollment, job placement, and related matters should be directed to an appropriate office at Savannah Technical College. Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, 1866 Southern Lane Decatur, GA 30033-4097, 404-679-4500.


#1817 | February 14, 2018

Vice-President Adult Education: Dr. Brent Stubbs
912.443.4150 or

Media Contact: Amy Shaffer, APR
912.443.5512 or