Dawson County High School sophomore Matthew Wyckoff recently competed in the Georgia Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) state culinary knife skills event and took second place in the state.
The event was held in Athens on March 17 when he competed against 25 or so other students.
Georgia FCCLA offers a competitive events program that includes a number of different categories like consumer math challenge, early childhood challenge, culinary food art and culinary knife skills.
"I was shocked," Wyckoff said about how he finished. "I didn't see myself getting in the top three."
Wyckoff is a part of DCHS' first year culinary program. He is taking Culinary 1 where students have book work as well as time to cook and prep food.
The 16-year-old received a rating high enough to take the second spot overall during the competition.
"The culinary events offer skill development and application of learning through individualization and competition," said Culinary Arts Instructor Terry Haymond. "This is an individual event, showcases FCCLA member knowledge of knife skills and cuts, knife cut identification and knife skills demonstration."
Though Wyckoff said he was nervous during the competition, he still felt like he performed well for his first effort.
"I feel like I did great my first year and this year is where I start getting involved with everything and to get this far in my first year shows me I can do better later down the road," he said.
Wyckoff plans to pursue some type of career in the food industry.
His ultimate goal?
"Be successful as possible and never stop or look back," Wyckoff said.