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Jumping Hurdles

In September 2018, Christina Hampton was working two part-time jobs as a food server, raising her young daughter and taking classes at Trident Technical College when she heard that Hurricane Florence was headed to Charleston. 
A mandatory evacuation was ordered and both restaurants for which she worked were shutting down. Christina was worried about her daughter’s safety, so she went to stay with a friend inland.
But what scared her the most was what might happen immediately afterward.

“As a single mother who is almost always struggling to make ends meet, missing a few days of work can be detrimental,” she says. “But I am working hard to finish school and that is what keeps me going.” 

Christina never thought she would go to college. Nobody in her family had ever gone and her grades were mostly average. She ran track, but never thought she was good enough to get scholarships.

She remembers all of her friends talking about going away to college and says, “I never even considered colle…
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TTC Alum Comes Full Circle

Jack Mills wasn’t quite sure what he wanted to do with his life when he graduated from high school. But he knew what he didn’t want to do.

“I grew up in a military household, but had no desire to enlist,” he says. “Nor did I want to attend college or work in the tourism trade.”

Mills was interested in electronics, and after investigating options, he enrolled at Trident Technical College.

“Classes were interesting, the hands-on labs were fun and the instructors were excellent,” says Mills.

During his first year at TTC, he was encouraged by one of his instructors to apply for a scholarship and received $500 for tuition and books. This helped him progress more quickly toward a degree and he received an Associate in Engineering Technology in 1982, becoming the first in his family to graduate from college.

During his final semester, he was offered a job installing and servicing X-ray equipment and jumped at the chance. It was enough money to be able to get a place of his own and get …

Making an Impact for TTC Students

Trident Technical College Foundation and the Culinary Institute of Charleston hosted the 17th annual A Night in the Valley on Jan. 31.

Selling out months in advance, A Night in the Valley supports scholarships and other critical needs of the college. More than 600 guests are treated to a three-course, wine-paired dinner prepared and served by Culinary Institute of Charleston students and faculty.

Many attendees come back year after year for this highly anticipated event, making it a great opportunity to network with successful and philanthropic supporters of the college. But more than that, they come because they know the impact TTC makes on the community, providing high-quality education at an affordable price.

For some, it is an opportunity to come back to where it all started. Anthony Jackson, CEO of Roper St. Francis Hospitals, graduated from the Radiologic Technology program at TTC in 1990.

“This is where I found my confidence. This is where I found my voice,” says Jackson, w…

Stuck in a Rut

Jenna Pernell, First Place Winner
2019 Future Alumni Essay Contest

Endless days and nights were fueled by the needs and cries of little ones. Sleep was no longer a priority, but more of a luxury. I was a mother trying to cope with parenting a one-year-old daughter as well as a newborn daughter. My life 7 years ago seemed fulfilled by the love of a husband and the blessing of children. I thrived as a stay-at-home mom who was lucky to experience and enjoy each day with my children as they learned new things. I told myself that I would be the most upstanding wife and mom by doing everything possible to keep our home clean and organized. My husband worked effortlessly to keep a steady income that provided for our family. The struggles of providing for a family of four with one income began to be daunting. The monotony of each day slowly started to bring on a sense of sadness and missed opportunity.

Refusing to settle for a life of living paycheck to paycheck is what inspired me to pursue …


Addie Ledbetter, Second Place Winner
2019 Future Alumni Essay Contest

I’m sure as you are beginning to read my essay, you are wondering why I entitled it “Lagniappe.” You may even be wondering how to pronounce the word or what it could possibly mean. Lagniappe [lan yap] – noun. Something given as a bonus or extra gift. Synonyms: Reward. Prize. Bonus. Incentive. Now it may be a little bit clearer as to why I chose the Cajun French word of Lagniappe to describe my experience at Trident Technical College. Now, let’s look at the definition of the word college. College – noun. An educational institution or establishment, in particular, one providing higher education or specialized training. Albeit, TTC does provide higher education and professional training for many students each term, it is truly so much more than that.

I started at Trident in the Fall of 2017 with one goal in mind; obtain my nursing degree. Like many students, this would be my second degree. I had just graduated a few mo…

Trident Tech: Something for Everyone

Maria Martin
Third Place Winner, 2019 Future Alumni Essay Contest
When I graduated high school, I knew that I wanted to study Creative Writing and Art. I went to a four-year liberal arts college and pursued a double major in English with Creative Writing and Studio Art. I got a lot out of my time as an undergraduate. I had the chance to develop an artistic practice that is fulfilling to me to this day. I learned how to think critically and develop ideas, but I did not spend much time as an undergraduate considering my future career. It wasn’t until the middle of my last semester that I realized with a pang of regret that in order to share art with a wider audience, I needed to develop computer skills in website design, creating print layouts, editing photos and videos. I felt like I had missed an important opportunity to learn these skills in college. I didn’t believe that I had enough time or money to continue my education.

After graduation, I began working full time in a series of jo…

SC Aeronautical Training Center Ribbon-Cutting

The college officially opened the South Carolina Aeronautical Training Center on Friday, Nov. 9 with a ribbon-cutting event for industry partners, donors and elected officials. Gov. Henry McMaster, TTC President Mary Thornley and other dignitaries cut the ribbon in one the facilities' two aircraft hangars.

The new center houses all of the college’s Aeronautical Studies programs and provides space for both academic and continuing education training in other advanced manufacturing fields. ReadySC’s Boeing Training Center, where pre-employment, new hire and skill enhancement training for BoeingSC is held, is located on the building’s third floor.

The $80 million center includes an aircraft ramp, two hangars with high bays to accommodate a variety of aircraft and large aircraft training aids, 22 classrooms, 25 specialty labs, six flex-space labs, 37 offices, meeting spaces, a cafĂ©, and catering kitchen. The building’s design provides many sustainable features including a solar array …