CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Board of Education on Wednesday honored two 2011 graduates of a Kanawha County career-technical program who recently captured national awards.
Shawnelle Lavender, a 37-year-old Winfield resident, took first place in the national Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda awards competition in the business communications category. Judges said they chose Lavender as the winner largely because of her work on a test and a writing sample. Lavender studied medical information systems at Garnet Career Center in Charleston with hopes of working in a medical office.
Cortney Harper, a 21-year-old Sissonville native, was awarded 10th place in the computer application competition. She studied office administration.
“West Virginia’s public schools are filled with students like Shawnelle and Cortney,” said state Superintendent of Schools Jorea Marple. “They are fine examples of the education quality West Virginia has to offer. I wish them the best of luck as they begin the next phase of their lives.”
The women competed against 1,800 students from across the country, including some from four-year universities. The students were separated into 55 business and business-related competitive events. To qualify to compete at the national competition, students had to place first or second in a category in their state competition.
Along with the title, Lavender won $500.
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--The West Virginia Board of Education and the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) are committed to ensuring all students in the state are college and career ready when they graduate from a public school. What West Virginia students are learning in school exceeds national and international standards. Through the WVDE’s 21st century learning plan called “Global21: Students deserve it. The world demands it.,” West Virginia is seeing better student performance on the West Virginia Educational Standards Test 2 (WESTEST2); the SAT and the ACT college entrance exams; the job skills assessment called Work Keys given to career and technical education students; and in a high school graduation rate that exceeds the national average.