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Duluth Sixth Grader Wins Second Place in Statewide Student Design Contest

GWINNETT — Sharona Huang, a sixth grader at Duluth’s Coleman Middle School, had lunch with Gov. Nathan Deal on Thursday. Huang won second place in the 2017 Manufacturing Appreciation Week (MAW) student design contest in the sixth through eighth grade category.

Coleman Middle School sixth grader, Sharona Huang stands proudly alongside Governor Nathan Deal as a second place winner in Georgia's Manufacturing Appreciation Week student design competition.

She received a $300 scholarship check presented by Gov. Nathan Deal at the MAW awards luncheon held on Thurday, April 27 at the Georgia International Convention Center in Atlanta.

Students from around the state submitted design entries featuring Georgia manufacturers and their products. “The design contest reaches out to our younger generation to show them how important manufacturing is to our lifestyle and economy, and to introduce them to the great careers available in manufacturing,” said Richard Warner, noted Georgia journalist and emcee of the event.

Ann Sechrist, Director of Economic Development at Gwinnett Tech shared, “We were so excited to learn that one of our local students was selected as a 2017 award winner. We had close to 20 submissions from our community alone. It’s great to see the participation in this contest continue to grow each year, along with our students’ interest in manufacturing.” Sechrist continued, “The manufacturing industry has changed significantly in the last few decades. These are clean, high-tech jobs that pay well above average. Graduates in this field are in high-demand. Gwinnett Tech is committed to doing our part to help grow the workforce of tomorrow and it starts with our students today.”

MAW winner with momSharona Huang, a sixth grader from Duluth’s Coleman Middle School, stands with her mom, Ann, as she showcases her winning design in Georgia’s Manufacturing Appreciation Week student design contest. Huang won 2nd place in the grade 6-8 category.The awards luncheon was the highlight of MAW, celebrated this year April 24-28. Co-hosted by the Technical College System of Georgia and the Georgia Department of Economic Development, MAW brings attention to this significant component of Georgia’s economy. According to Gov. Nathan Deal’s proclamation declaring Manufacturing Appreciation Week, nearly 10,059 manufacturing facilities are located in Georgia, where they provide 386,599 jobs, generate nearly $20.3 billion in wages for Georgia’s citizens, and contribute more than $100 billion to the state’s economy each year.

This is the 23rd year celebrating Manufacturing Appreciation Week in Georgia. This year’s sponsors included The Georgia Association of Manufacturers, The Georgia Manufacturing Extension Partnership with the Georgia Institute of Technology, Georgia Power, and HA+W | Aprio. Other exhibitors at the luncheon included APICS – The Association for Operations Management, Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Georgia’s Center of Innovation for Manufacturing, the Georgia Department of Labor, the Georgia Employers Association, the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, Georgia Trend, Next Generation Manufacturing, and the Technology Association of Georgia Manufacturing Society.