Lt. Governor Cagle Announces April Student Spotlight: Rhea Chawla

April 30, 2018

Today, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle recognized Rhea Chawla, a design and marketing pathway student at Lanier College and Career Academy, as the Lt. Governor's April student spotlight. Each month, Lt. Governor Cagle features an exceptional Georgia College and Career Academy student who exemplifies academic and pathway success, extracurricular involvement, and strong leadership skills.

“I'm proud of Rhea’s exceptional focus and determination as she positively impacts her College and Career academy and community,” said Lt. Governor Cagle. “It’s inspiring to see how Lanier College and Career Academy has empowered Rhea to follow her dreams and I commend CEO David Moody for his exemplary leadership. Rhea’s hands-on work experience, impressive work ethic, and outstanding leadership skills have put her on a path to professional success.”

“Students like Rhea are what make our community so special. Lt. Governor Cagle’s College and Career Academy Network is transforming our schools to empower every student to achieve success. When we reward students for investing in themselves, we can truly unlock the potential of each individual and community. I’m proud of the example Rhea has set and I look forward to her continued achievements in the future,” said Senator Butch Miller.

“Rhea balances a busy schedule that includes daily leadership and an intense course load. While developing herself as a well-rounded student, she is also continuously looking for ways to better her community,” added David Moody, CEO of Lanier College and Career Academy. “As a leader, she has the capacity to visualize a situation from another person’s perspective which allows her to connect with empathy towards others in their time of need. She gets involved and takes the initiative to accomplish goals while making a significant impact in her community.”

Tell us about yourself:

"I am a senior at Flowery High School and a full-time dual enrollment student at the University of North Georgia. I have attended Lanier College & Career Academy’s Design and Marketing Work-Based Learning Program for the past four years, where I am the student manager at the in-house Design 360 Lab.

I was the President of both 4-H Senior County Council and DECA for the past two years and as Vice President for both these clubs in my sophomore and junior years. I am also a three-time Master 4-H’er and I serve as a Road Safety Ambassador for Youth Service America, where it has been my goal to spread the message of the dangers of distracted driving in our community."

Why did you choose to be a part of your CCA?

"I chose to attend Lanier College and Career Academy because of the strong Design and Marketing Pathway class that works cohesively with the Design360 Lab. This program is unlike any other because interns have the opportunity to work not only with the school system but also with outside organizations and corporations. As an intern, I take custom orders for t-shirts, sweatshirts, totes, banners, and other promotional items and design them based on customer specifications. After customer approvals, I produce the orders using direct to garment printing, sublimation, or embroidery. This has provided me with the ability to get a head start on my design career."

Which career pathway are you enrolled in and why?

"I have been enrolled in the Design and Marketing Pathway for the past four years because designing is my passion and creativity is a part of who I am. I love designing because it gives me the freedom to express myself. The pleasure of creating something just from a thought or a flash in mind is deeply satisfying. I am certified in Adobe Photoshop and proficient in Adobe Illustrator, Corel Draw, Acrobat, and InDesign. I am very adept at listening to client’s needs, then analyzing and offering practical cost-effective design solutions."

What is the most valuable learning experience you have gained from your CCA?

"Being a part of Lanier CCA has encouraged me to evolve into the person I am today, always helping me to strive for more. I have developed the necessary skills to see a given project from the first idea through conceptualization, often stretching the boundaries to help the client’s brand and design to stand out. Through this pathway, I have achieved both the Georgia Best Executive and Elite Level Job Ready Certifications. These experiences have served me well and helped me to become more responsible, organized, confident, and also hone in on my communication skills while preparing me for a career in design.

I have served as the President of DECA for the past two years and as Vice President my Sophomore and Junior Classes at LCCA. These experiences have humbled me, and I have learned that being a leader is a privilege with the responsibility of inspiring others to work towards a common goal. Leadership is not just about giving directions; instead, it is about being a good role model and possessing the ability to influence and empower others to make decisions based on their skills."

What services/resources at your CCA have you found to be the most valuable?

"LCCA has state of the art industry-grade equipment and software resources available for student use. However, one of the most valuable resources at LCCA is the faculty and administration. It is invaluable to learn from industry professional faculty members that create a hands-on working environment while exposing students to real life workplace scenarios. Our administration is always open to trying new ideas and allowing students to experiment with new possibilities."

What are your plans after graduation?

"Upon graduation, I will complete my certification in Corel Draw, Adobe Illustrator, and Microsoft Office Suite. This fall, I will attend the Savannah College of Art and Design to major in Fashion Design & minor in Graphic Design.

Volunteering has enhanced my life, and I seek to combine innovation with service in the future. I would like to start my own clothing company and I will use my passion for design to do my part in reducing our carbon footprint. I aim to design sustainable and eco-friendly clothing using non-toxic, low-impact dyed fabrics made out of recycled materials like discarded plastic bottles, plastic bags, used coffee beans, corn and rice husk that would otherwise end up in landfills. 

No matter where life’s journey takes me, I know the invaluable life and career skills gained at LCCA along with my creativity and passion for designing will help me succeed for whatever lies ahead!"

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