Gerald Jones Automotive Group, Commits $250,000 to Augusta Technical College's Automotive Institute

Staff Report

Friday, February 16th, 2024

Gerald Jones Automotive Group proudly announces a generous pledge of $250,000 by its owner, Andy Jones, to support the establishment of the Automotive Institute at Augusta Technical College. This institute, situated at the former Johnson Cadillac location on 1122 Walton Way, is poised to become a national model for comprehensive training in various automotive technician fields.

The Automotive Institute, spanning an impressive 65,000 square feet, will offer innovative training in traditional automotive, electric and hybrid vehicles, light, medium, and heavy diesel, as well as auto body and collision repair. Additionally, the Institute will introduce a new business degree tailored to the automotive industry.

Dr. Jermaine Whirl, President of Augusta Tech, expressed gratitude for Mr. Jones's commitment, emphasizing that this visionary investment will provide students with outstanding training for lucrative careers in the automotive industry.

“We are building a national model for preparing people to work in the automotive industry,” said Dr. Jermaine Whirl. “We are grateful that Mr. Jones is investing in this vision that will provide students with excellent training for lucrative jobs in this critical industry.

Motivated by the significance of auto technicians in dealership operations and the promising career opportunities they create, Andy Jones remarked, “It’s the most important part of an automotive dealership and it creates great career opportunities for area residents,” he says. “It’s important to me and it’s great for the community!”

The Automotive Institute is expected to enroll over 1,000 students in day and evening programs on-site, a substantial increase from the current 10,000 square feet occupied by the automotive program.

Classes are scheduled to commence in Fall 2025, expanding Augusta Tech's current offerings to include more programs within the new institute. The facility, named the Jim Hudson Automotive Institute, reflects a generous $1 million gift from the Jim Hudson Automotive Group, along with contributions from the Augusta National Golf Club and the Knox Foundation.

Augusta Tech is actively engaging with individuals and companies in the automotive industry regionally in the CSRA, throughout Georgia and South Carolina, and nationally to raise additional funds for the building's renovation and equipment. A complete list of funding opportunities is available from the Augusta Tech Foundation, reachable at 706-771-4023 or [email protected].