By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support local journalism.
DesJarlais gives Warren County a visit
DesJarlais BETTER original
Lacy Garrison photo Congressman Scott DesJarlais observes the Mechatronics technology offered at Motlow State Community College during his tour of the campus. DesJarlais visited several schools Thursday to learn about the advanced workplace development programs offered in Warren County.

Congressman Scott DesJarlais visited several local schools on Thursday to learn about the leadership and advanced workplace development programs offered in Warren County.

His first stop was Warren County High School.

“At the high school, I went over and saw several of the students engaged there,” said DesJarlais. “I talked to several of the students this morning and asked them what their plans are. It’s nice to see they’ve got aspirations to go into engineering, to get engineering degrees from out of this program so I think more and more students are going to find you don’t always have to go to college to get a good-paying job. This gives them a great opportunity.”

The Automation and Robotics Training (ART) Center welcomed DesJarlais into its facilities for a tour and presentation. Fred Rascoe, dean of career and technical programs, and Larry Flatt, director of advanced robotics, spoke about the history and future of the ART program.

“The thing that’s driving us is there are 7,000 robots within 75 miles of our facility,” said Flatt. “We’re working with robot companies who are allowing us to reach out into regions. I was on the phone yesterday afternoon with one of the manufacturers and he says you basically can draw people from all over the United States to come to McMinnville, Tenn essee to be taught how to program a robot so that’s what we’re excited about.”

During the presentation, DesJarlais explained the new Farm Bill that deals with the Supplemental Nutrition-al Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP recipients will be required to work 20 hours a week, or attend 20 hours of job training, in a state-mandated program, if they want to continue receiving benefits. DesJarlais suggested the ART program may qualify for funds from this new bill in the future.

“I guess I’m thinking ahead, but if this goes though, is this something that could possibly be a partnership in the next couple of years?” asked DesJarlais.

Rascoe seemed to believe Motlow could accommodate the requirements necessary to receive the funds if the bill, in fact, passes.

DesJarlais said he visited the ART program several years ago and is impressed by the progress.

“To see the number of students that are coming out of this is really impressive and encouraging and the continued growth that we’re learning about today I think is going to make this a key site for future business and a lot of good foresight has gone into the planning here,” said DesJarlais.