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FCCLA goes gold
Diligently working to prepare a complete meal are students, at back from left, Kelvin Fernandez and Abbigail Britton. Lexi Fults works at the first station. This competition was the first for this group and made history by winning gold in the culinary arts division.

Warren County High School’s Family Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) brought home the gold at a recent State Leadership Conference held in Chattanooga.

The Culinary Arts Team made history as it was the first Warren County team to ever win first place with gold at the conference. Team members are Lexi Fults, Kelvin Fernandez and Abbigail Britton. They each won a $16,000 scholarship to Sullivan University if they choose to attend. They also advanced to nationals this summer as the only culinary team from Tennessee.

“They are the first and we are so proud of them,” said adviser Suzanne Prater. “It’s really difficult to win the culinary arts division, and they won with a score of 95. Scores are determined from their organizational skills, safety and sanitation, food prep, proper temperature, presentation and quality and taste.”

Other members also received first-place gold. They are: Gracie Winton with her project, “Campus Code Red” in the occupational interpersonal communications category; Ashlee Myers, Kaitlyn Mullican and Whitney Caldwell with their child luring project titled, “Don’t Get Hooked” in the focus on children occupational category; and Kataen Shockley with her project, “Feeding Friends: Steps to Ending Hunger,” in the focus on children junior category.

McKenzy Crittendon and Mackenzie Ayala won second-place gold with their faux coffee shop, “Aroma Mocha” project where they created a faux business for Warren County in the occupational hospitality and tourism category. All above winners qualified to attend the National Leadership conference in Atlanta to represent Tennessee FCCLA. 

Students winning fourth place and gold with their life event planning project, “Time to Adult,” was Calin Trapp and Trevor Collins.

Warren County FCCLA brought home all gold awards, which is the highest award available in competition. They were the only competing school in the state which all participants received gold. The chapter was recognized as a Superstar Chapter and was awarded recognition. All students in attendance competed in Students Taking Action with Recognition (STAR) events.

The FCCLA advisers are Suzanne Prater, Megan Sager, and CTE director Tracy Risinger.

After being secretly nominated to the state by a letter from her chapter members, Prater was recognized by the state FCCLA as the ROSE Award Winner for Recognition of Service Excellence. The mission of the ROSE Award is to honor an adviser who exemplifies excellent service to FCCLA.

“I was nominated by my students and that means so much. When I think about it, I get emotional,” said Prater.

Through one-on-one or behind-the-scenes contact, the adviser has a positive influence on students, families and the community. 

Also attending the conference with the high school chapter for their second year, as a newly formed chapter, was the Warren County Middle School FCCLA. Teacher Joyce Britton accompanied the students.

Molly Dodd competed in the recycle and redesign junior category with her project, "Roll On” and received a gold medal and first-place position qualifying her for nationals.

Baily Bundy competed in the junior category of sports nutrition in which she earned a bronze medal for her project creating a health and nutrition plan for a friend who is a student athlete.