Gwinnett Tech Names Sharon Shelton 2011 GOAL Winner

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Gwinnett Tech President Sharon Bartels (center) and Gwinnett Tech GOAL finalists (left to right) Maggie Waddell, Andres Navarrete, Sharon Shelton (GOAL winner) and Alfred Sanalila.

Sharon Shelton, an Interiors student, is the winner of Gwinnett Technical College”s 2011 Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership (GOAL).

The Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) sponsors the GOAL program, which recognizes outstanding technical college students and honors excellence in academics and leadership. Local GOAL winners are selected at each of the state”s 26 technical colleges.

Shelton holds a bachelor”s degree in industrial engineering from the University of Louisville and earned a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Human Resources from the Indiana University in Bloomington. She chose to attend Gwinnett Tech because of the award-winning status of its Interiors program and a passion for design. As a brain tumor survivor, Shelton has overcome many obstacles in her life and is an inspiration to her fellow students.

Gwinnett Tech”s other GOAL finalists include:

  • Andres Navarrete, a Horticulture student
  • Alfred Sanalila, a Networking Specialist student
  • Maggie Waddell, a Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management student

Shelton was nominated by Susan Arnold, Interiors program director, who says, “While studying in the Interiors program, Sharon has succeeded in her studies by maintaining a 4.0 GPA.# She is a devoted and energetic student who exhibits the ability to creatively problem solve.”

GOAL competition judges also commended Shelton, calling her “the new image of technical education.” “Sharon is highly educated and had a successful career, but when faced with a life-changing event, she took a deep look within and decided to pursue a path of desire instead of necessity. Her desire was to add beauty and enhance people”s environments by interior design. To fulfill her passion, she knew that only a technical education would help her to reach her goals and share her skills with the community.”

Judges for the GOAL competition included Gresham Ard, Bardi Heating & Air; John Howard, Pinnacle Advertising Solutions; Julie Haley, Edge Solutions (NF); Justin Price, Poli Mortgage; Pam Prengaman, Allstate; and David Seago, retired from Georgia Power Company and a former Gwinnett Technical College board member.

As Gwinnett Tech”s GOAL winner, Shelton will continue on to the statewide GOAL competition. If she wins the state competition, Shelton will serve as an ambassador for technical education in Georgia and win a Chevrolet Cruze.

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