Mission, Values, & History


Atlanta Technical College, a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia, provides lifelong educational opportunities and experiences through academic and innovative career preparation, service learning, and multiple program delivery modalities that lead to technical certificates, diplomas, and associate degrees and make student development and success possible in a competitive global economy.

The mission of Atlanta Technical College is composed within the philosophical framework of the Technical College System of Georgia.

It is reviewed and approved annually by the faculty, staff, administration and the Board of Directors

Strategic Plan

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The vision of Atlanta Technical College is to transform the lives of students, faculty and staff to positively impact the institution and the community.

Core Values

    • Excellence: We strive for perfection in all that we do.
    • Integrity: We do what is right in all circumstances, maintaining the highest ethical standards.
    • Customer Service: We proactively respond to the needs of our students and the college community.
    • Professionalism: We plan and execute all tasks with a sense of urgency and a positive attitude.
    • Respect: We treat everyone with honor and equity.
    • Teamwork: We work together to accomplish the mission.
    • Diversity & Inclusion: We value and celebrate the uniqueness that comprises our college community.

Atlanta Technical College’s core values complement the Technical College System of Georgia belief system.


Tracing its origin through six decades, Atlanta Technical College has grown from fairly modest beginnings. Atlanta Technical College was established as Smith-Hughes Vocational School at 232 Pryor Street, and first enrolled adults in vocational education in 1945 following World War II. The school was moved in 1964 to Smith High School at 535 Hill Street and renamed Hoke Smith Technical Institute. At that time, about 24 occupational programs were offered. Federal funding for vocational education in the late 1960s promoted the concept of area vocational technical schools.

In 1953, the Northside extension campus, Tuxedo Center, was opened at 4191 Northside Drive in northwest Atlanta. In 1967, the school was reorganized as Atlanta Area Technical School and was moved to its current southwest campus, enrolling its first students in the new facilities in January 1968. The Child Care Center and Ferguson Hall Annex were completed the same year. In 1997, the school’s name was changed to Atlanta Technical Institute, and the institution became part of the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education.

In June 1999, Atlanta Technical Institute completed a $1.3 million renovation of its south entrance facade. The renovation provided covered walks and outdoor seating plazas. On July 1, 2000, the name was changed to Atlanta Technical College. In 2007, the college acquired use of the property at 1520 Metropolitan Parkway, adjacent to main campus, through the Atlanta Technical College Foundation, Inc. The facility at that location currently houses the Atlanta Technical College Institute for Males. The $14 million Brenda Watts Jones Allied Health and Technology Complex opened in the fall of 2010. In August 2012, the college completed a $4.8 million renovation of a new 36,000 square foot state-of-the-art library, testing center, and facility department hub.

Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and with an average semester enrollment of 4,800 students, Atlanta Tech offers associate degrees, diploma programs, technical certificates of credit, and continuing education short-term courses. In addition to day and evening class schedules, hybrid schedules and online courses are also offered. Additionally, Atlanta Technical College, through its Economic Development Division, develops customized courses for business and industry.

Atlanta Technical College has produced seven state GOAL (Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership) winners and four state PRIDE (Performance Recognition Indicating Demonstrated Excellence) winners. GOAL is the highest award given to outstanding technical students in Georgia. In addition to having an excellent track record in producing winners in state competitions, Atlanta Technical College is proud of the students who also excel in regional and national competitions representing student associations and organizations. In 2007, Washington Monthly magazine named Atlanta Technical College “America’s Best Community College, and the college was recognized by the Technical College System of Georgia with the Perdue Award for Technical College of the Year in 2012.

Atlanta Technical College provides an exceptional education to a diverse group of students, representing ethnic groups from around the world, younger and older people, high school and college graduates, persons with special needs, and persons with varied backgrounds, academic requirements, and interests. Women are enrolled in nontraditional programs such as automotive technology, maintenance technology, carpentry, and welding and joining technology.