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OTC Names Four GOAL Finalists

Top Four Goal with Dr. ThaxtonFour Okefenokee Technical College (OTC) students have been selected as local semifinalists for the 2005 Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership (GOAL), according to Karen Boyle, coordinator for the college’s GOAL program. This is the 35th year of the GOAL program. The semifinalists were announced last week at a Presidential Reception hosted by Dr. Gail Thaxton, President, and the OTC Student Government Association.

Chosen as semifinalists are Cynthia Harrell, Forestry, nominated by Tommy Peagler; Sharon Durrance, Business Office Technology, nominated by Joelyn Bell; Ann Wilson, Respiratory Therapy Technology, nominated by Faye Mathis; and Kayla Chaney, Radiologic Technology, nominated by Donna Yeomans.

Cynthia Harrell, a resident of Jeff Davis County, has two grown children and had been on the OTC President’s List. She previously attended East Central Technical College. Her instructor, Tommy Peagler, said: “Cynthia’s work ethics are models for fellow students, and she will make OTC proud as she pursues a career in forest resources.”

A resident of Screven, Sharon Durrance, graduated with honors from Coastal Community College and enrolled at OTC to acquire transcription and other medical office experience in hopes of opening her own transcription business. She is a member of the Student Government Association and has been on the President’s List for two quarters. Sharon has three children and nine grandchildren.

A graduate of Bacon County High School, Ann Wilson lives in Mershon. She has two children—Kelli, 17, who attends Bacon County High School, and Taylor, 12, who attends Bacon Middle School. Ann is the historian for Skills USA and has been on the President’s List at OTC. She attends Antioch Baptist Church where she teaches a Sunday School class.

Kayla Chaney, a resident of Douglas, is a 2004 graduate of Coffee County High School. She won the Senior humanitarian award. At OTC, she is a Student Ambassador, a member of the Student Government Association, and a member of Skills USA. She works part-time at Chaney Motors in Douglas as a sales associate. She attends First Assembly of God. Her parents are Cyndee and Donny Chaney.

The GOAL program is co-sponsored statewide by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education. Locally, GOAL is sponsored by the Waycross-Ware Chamber of Commerce and coordinated by officials from Okefenokee Technical College with the support of the Student Government Association.

“The GOAL program,” said Mrs. Boyle, “seeks to spotlight the importance of technical education in today’s world and to recognize outstanding achievement by students in our state’s technical college.”

“A selection committee of area business and community leaders will now interview and evaluate these four students,” explained Mrs. Boyle, “and the one judged most outstanding will compete with representatives from Georgia’s other technical colleges for the 2006 GOAL medallion and a new automobile. The OTC winner will be announced at a luncheon hosted by the Waycross Exchange Club and the Waycross-Ware County Chamber of Commerce on March 9. The state GOAL competition is held in Atlanta the week of May 23-26.

Picture L to R:  Cynthia Harrell, Sharon Durrance, Ann Wilson, Kayla Chaney, and Dr. Gail Thaxton.

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