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Jobs for Georgia Graduates club gets first at state
JGG team photo
Alicia Velasquez, Emma French, Dara Lemley and Rustin Howell pose with their first place trophy after their Creative Problem Solving team won first place during the Jobs for Georgia Graduates state competition in Macon on Mar. 3. - photo by For the Dawson County News

The Jobs for Georgia Graduates (JGG) club at Dawson County High School traveled last week to the 2017 State Career Association Conference and the Creative Problem Solving Team came away with a first place victory for the state of Georgia.

The DCHS contingency also took first place for their community service project and third place for their chapter manual.

The teams competed at regionals on Feb. 17 at the University of North Georgia campus in Gainesville and those that placed first in region advanced to compete during the Mar. 3 state event at the Macon Centreplex in Macon.

Twenty-two schools from around the state competed to move on to the 30th annual conference.

According to the group sponsor, Kathie Fodor, this is the first time in three years that the club has come away with a first place trophy.

The conference consisted of breakout sessions in the morning that covered employer expectations, banking basics and job survival skills.

Students were welcomed and awarded by Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler.

The Creative Problem Solving Team consisted of: Emma French, Rustin (Cade) Howell, Dara Lemley and Alicia Velasquez.

That team presented information to the judges on the issue of absenteeism and how schools can make efforts to better address the issue.

"Emma was number one because she got it going. She was the energy of it," Fodor said.

According to Fodor, the team presented a number of PowerPoint slideshows and were asked mystery questions by the judges.

"They had UNG judges and Dept. of Labor judges at regional competition," Fodor said.

The group's community service project was putting together "Blessing Boxes" for the Gateway Domestic Violence Center.

"We collected all the hygiene products," Fodor said. "People donated them or they donated the money and we bought them. We made like 50 boxes."

The center serves more than 1,000 different victims of domestic violence.

The third place win for the chapter manual was a group effort that included students in the club coming before and after school and during the lunch hour to compile photos and information from JGG's social activities, community service, civic activities and the induction ceremony.

Students from the group that were not competing attended the budget workshop.