In Their Own Words: Nautica Dotson, 2018 JTG Graduate

This summer, we are featuring stories by 2018 JTG graduates and offering them a chance to share the impact JTG has had on their lives. This week’s guest writer is Nautica Dotson from Creek Wood High School. 

Starting out my senior year, I was worried I was not going to have a class that would help me prepare for after college. There was one particular class that I did sign up for that was just for seniors, which was Jobs for Tennessee (JTG). This is a class that helps graduating students achieve their purpose to graduate and help with their careers. JTG has helped me with various opportunities including the following: helping me graduate, a chance to go to Washington D.C., my career goals, and my plans after graduation.

Mrs. Orman has been a great JTG teacher who cares about her students so much. At the beginning of the year, we went straight to filling out scholarships, which helped out so much for the ones planning to attend college. Mrs. Orman has made sure all her students are caught up and passing not only her class but also other classes as well, making sure every student is going to graduate. She has made so many opportunities for me. Without her I would not be where I am now.

At the end of November, she gave all of her JTG students the opportunity to write an essay for achance to either go to Washington, D.C. or for it to go to a scholarship. I have never planned to go out of state in my whole life, so I wrote the Washington essay hoping, praying, and putting my dedication into the it in order to win. A week goes by, and Mrs. Orman told me I was 1 out of the 3 who won the chance to go to Washington. This was such a big accomplishment in my life and the best opportunity I have ever achieved. I met so many people and got outside my comfort zone from public speaking to introducing and meeting new people. This was my favorite part of JTG because I had the chance to express myself and actually accomplish something I pushed for.

Mrs. Orman has given us multiple assignments on our careers to help us make sure it is the career for us. I will be attending Austin Peay State University for computer science so I can be a computer software engineer. I am so glad that Mrs. Orman gave us these assignments, even though it was trying at times, because it helped me plan my future career. Software developers are so important since technology is developing so much. I would have never known what to declare as my major without the career assignments Mrs. Orman gave us.

I am so glad that I took this class because I am so blessed to have a teacher who cares as much as Mrs. Orman. I would have never had the opportunity to go and experience Washington D.C., which was such a blessing to take part in. After I graduate, I know exactly where I am going and where I want to be – which is all thanks of JTG and Mrs. Jodie Orman.

By |2018-06-08T18:28:39+00:00June 8th, 2018|College, In Their Own Words, Planning, Uncategorized|38 Comments

About the Author:

Call it John Dwyer 2.0 After 29 years as a TV Broadcaster, Dwyer is President & CEO of Jobs for Tennessee Graduates (JTG). JTG, an affiliate of Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG), is a non-profit organization dedicated to stewarding at-risk high school students toward graduation with follow through toward post-secondary education and/or job opportunities. Associated with JAG since 1981, JTG consistently obtains a graduation rate above 90-percent with a full-time job rate at nearly 70-percent. The most vulnerable, socioeconomically challenged young men and women, graduate with self-esteem with the realization and skill set to achieve success after high school. Does it get much better than that? Dwyer, is a resident of the Nashville area since 1996. He was sports director and/or a news anchor at TV stations in Nashville, Jacksonville, Florida; Ft. Myers, FL and his hometown of South Bend, Indiana. He is a 10-time Mid-South Region Emmy Award winner, along with winning numerous other awards. He is also a former Heisman Trophy voter. John is a 1985 graduate of Butler University, where he majored in Radio/TV while minoring in journalism. An avid running (or “plodder” as he likes to call himself), Dwyer runs in Nashville’s annual marathon. (Current tally: 7 Full, 10 Half). He accomplished a goal, once thought out of reach, be qualifying and running in the Boston Marathon in 2009. Married to Lynley, Dwyer resides in East Nashville with his wife and dog Lola. Dwyer served on the Make-A-Wish Middle Tennessee board from 2006-2012, and was board chairman for three years.


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JTG on the Frontlines for Equality

Supporting and Empowering our Communities of Color

COVID-19 Update

JAG and JTG Statement in Response to COVID-19

 As we are all feeling, COVID-19 has shifted how the world operates in a way that is unprecedented for our generation, and Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) and Jobs for Tennessee Graduates (JTG), one of 39 JAG state affiliates, are no exception. The impact of the coronavirus and the immediate danger it presents has closed our education system, directly affecting students and their families. This is especially detrimental to JTG students, who often look to their JTG Specialists and classmates for steadiness and security in their lives.

We also recognize that our students and their families are disproportionately affected by the closure of restaurants, stores, bars, and other service-industry places of work. These jobs often provide the entry-level opportunities our students need to enter the workforce. A difficult environment is likely to continue for some time, so we are in the process to reposition our training and support to make the best case for our JTG students to be considered for employment.

At a time when we must social distance ourselves to protect each other, the thousands of JTG students we serve need us more than ever.  We are responding to and encouraged by the requests from many JTG Specialists to access online learning modules and platforms provided by JAG educational partners like the Skills to Succeed Academy, EverFi, and Tallo. We are excited to see the interest in the JAG Genius and the use of virtual connectivity and the online sense of community – something we all need in these times.

Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) and Jobs for Tennessee Graduates (JTG) recognize we need to modify the way we provide support and deliver competencies to our students during this time of uncertainty. In response to the way business and education are adapting (in real time) to COVID-19,  JAG National is establishing new protocols and processes to ensure full, virtual engagement with our young people to ensure they have the competencies they need to meet the very competitive job market ahead. That is why JAG is providing the immediate recommendations below that are of highest priority, which impact the day-to-day lives of our students and Specialists. Like our world right now, please know that these are in real-time and subject to change.


Moving forward, we will have ongoing recommendations that will be built into new practices that will serve as both short- and long-term solutions to continue JAG’s data-driven model. This will help us remain accountable to our students, our partners, funders, and each other.