News from Chipola College


MARIANNA—The Chipola College Academic Center for Excellence is now offering free tutoring both in-person and online.

The popular spot on the college campus was forced to go virtual with the COVID pandemic. In the Fall 2020 term, ACE tutors conducted 500 sessions through ACE @ Home.

Students who are struggling with homework or preparing for tests, can stop by the ACE or make an appointment for online tutoring. The ACE offers free tutoring for almost every course offered at Chipola. Students also can get individual assistance or attend scheduled review sessions for that next big test.

Sessions are conducted by student peer tutors, as well as volunteers from the Chipola faculty.  Computers also are available for class assignments and projects.  Students can also join study groups with other students from the same classes.

ACE Coordinator Bonnie Smith says, “Even if you don’t find yourself struggling in your classes, the ACE provides a comfortable place to work and study.” Smith can be reached at

ACE Charity Sikora is responsible for online tutoring. She can be contacted at

ACE is open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and until noon on Friday by appointment.  ACE is located in building L, between the Student Services and Business buildings.

To learn more about ACE, or to schedule an online tutoring session, visit:


The Chipola College Black Student Union has planned several events to celebrate Black History Month in February.

BSU will host an art contest for Chipola students, an essay contest for middle and high school students and a film series for everyone. The events will be held Feb. 15–18.

Art and essay entries should highlight the theme: “facilitating awareness of the struggles, controversies, inequities, accomplishments, and contributions of African Americans from a global perspective.”

Chipola students are welcome to submit original art in the categories of paintings, drawing, photography, graphic design, 3-D and sculpture, will be accepted from Feb. 1-12.

Middle and high school students should email essays to: Deadline for essay submissions is Feb. 12.

There is no fee for entering any of the contests. Winners in each category will earn cash prizes: first, $100; second, $75; third, $50. Door Prizes also will be given away.  All entrants will receive a ZOOM link for winner announcements.

For more information or for entry forms, call 850-718-2319 or visit C-106, in the Social and Behavioral Sciences Office.


Spring classes at Chipola College began Jan. 7, but there is still time to enroll in many of the college’s Workforce Education programs. Several programs start new classes throughout the year, and others offer self-paced learning.

The Automotive Technology program utilizes an industry-based curriculum in partnership with local shops, and an advisory committee to provide students with the competitive edge in the ever-changing, high-tech training environment. The program has excellent job placement rates and is accredited by The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF).

The Cosmetology program has an excellent record of preparing stylists for excellent careers in the salon industry. Chipola is a Pivot-Point Member School helping stylists think, create and adapt as a designer, not just duplicate hairstyles. Students will learn the art of skin care and nail care as well as business knowledge in communications, public relations, sales promotions and salon structures and operations.

Building Construction Technology prepares students for employment or advanced training in the construction industry. The clock-hour program covers electrical, plumbing, heating/ventilation/air-conditioning, masonry, carpentry, cabinets, and the use of hand tools and power tools. Students will work with math and construction drawings and will be exposed to the steps in a building project. Entrepreneurship skills are offered for students who want to start their own business. Students can move into the workforce or continue their education in Chipola’s Two-Year AS Degree in Civil Engineering Technology.

The Advanced Manufacturing and Production Technology prepares students for employment or advanced training in manufacturing. This clock hour program includes an overview of Computer Aided Design (CAD), project management, CNC machines, computer controls, robotics, AC/DC electrical controls, Programmable Logic Controls, hydraulics, pneumatics, welding, instrumentation, and the fundamentals of industrial maintenance. Students will be eligible for jobs in automation, engineering, and robotics or may continue their education in Chipola’s Two-Year AS Degree in Engineering Technology.

The Advanced Welding course Chipola utilizes state-of-the-art welding equipment, hybrid learning, mobile welding units, simulation technologies and open education resources. Classes meet Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The program is made possible through a grant awarded to the Alabama/Florida Technical Employment Network (AF-TEN) that supports training for advanced manufacturing jobs.

Civil Engineering Technology is an AS Degree offering a combination of foundational concepts coupled with hands-on field training. The program offers a multi-craft approach including AutoCAD, Surveying, Materials & Methods of Construction, GIS/GPS Applications, Hydrology, and an understanding of road, bridge, and structure related developments. Training can lead to jobs in an engineering related career in design, engineering services, surveying, contracting, materials, or testing.  Students gain baseline knowledge to go to work in several different segments to become a true construction professional.

Engineering Technology is an AS degree offering Gold Collar credentials, because you are worth your weight in gold if the process/system shuts down, such as hydraulics, pneumatics, PLC’s and motors. A basic Millwright profile of expertise, this Engineering Tech degree covers industrial/plant maintenance training, as well as skill building aimed at advanced manufacturing and operations. Graduates can go to work with any of the local plants, and be fit for consideration with a sophisticated durable goods manufacturer such as automotive or heavy equipment.

The Law Enforcement Academy provides Basic Recruit Training is for individuals seeking a career in the field of Law Enforcement as well as Advanced, Specialized, and Career Development Training for active duty Law Enforcement Officers. Basic Recruit students will receive training in the classroom and hand-on training. Staff and instructors are committed to providing professional training and educational services, in a controlled environment, that will enhance the student’s knowledge, skills, and abilities, preparing them for the challenges ahead.

The Correctional Officer Academy offers a state-of-the-art facility with instructors to train Certified Correctional Officers. The program meets weekdays, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for 2 ½ months. An initial investment of $1,600 prepares graduates for a $30,000 a year career. Courses of study consist of 9 general classes and 3 high liability classes. Classes offer basic principles needed to become a professional in the field. High liability classes are made up of defensive tactics, first aid and firearms. Graduates are certified to work with the State of Florida Department of Corrections, county jails or any of the private prisons.

The Fire-fighting Academy is one of the premier academies in the state and has been recognized by the Florida State Fire College and the Florida Fire Training Directors Association as a Training Center of the Year. For the new recruit, Chipola offers a 4.5-month day class that combines both Firefighter 1 and 2. Certified volunteer firefighters may join existing classes to obtain a certificate of compliance as a Firefighter 2.

Darwin Gilmore, Chipola Dean of Workforce Education, says, “We offer excellent programs that help put people to work in as little as a few weeks. All programs have excellent placement rates in good-paying jobs.”

For information about Chipola Workforce Education programs, visit or contact Gilmore at or 850-718-2270.