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Top student moves to regional competition
0310annette shutters
Annette Shutters

An accounting student at Lanier Technical College’s Forsyth County campus has been named the college’s top student for 2010.

Annette Shutters was honored Tuesday during the Georgia Occupational Award of Leadership luncheon sponsored by the Gainesville Lions Club and the school’s Student Government Association.

“I’m absolutely thrilled. It’s a big surprise to me, especially coming at this point in my life, to be involved in something so valuable,” she said afterward. “It’s a real honor for me to win this.”

Shutters was selected among four finalists. The others were Denis Dubus, an industrial systems technology major; Anna Perdue, accounting; and Rey Moncada, criminal justice. Perdue also hails from the Forsyth County campus. Moncada and Dubus are students at the main campus in Oakwood.

Shutters, Perdue and Moncada delivered speeches before the awards presentation. Dubus was unable to attend because of work-related issues, Lanier Tech officials said.

Shutters now will compete in Northeast Georgia preliminary judging. Three finalists from the region will then compete in the state GOAL competition in Atlanta.

Her road to being named top student began with a nomination from an instructor, George Barbi, who was at the luncheon and who also nominated Perdue.

A screening committee of administrators at Lanier Tech then selected the four finalists from a list of nominees.

GOAL winners are selected at each of the state’s 27 technical colleges, as well as two Board of Regents colleges with technical education divisions.

The state GOAL winner is deemed a “student ambassador” for the Technical College System of Georgia and receives a new car as the grand prize.

“The purpose of the GOAL program is to spotlight the outstanding achievement by students in Georgia’s technical colleges and to emphasize the importance of technical education in today’s global work force,” said Jennifer Pulliam, coordinator for the Lanier Tech GOAL program.

Shutters, who has worked in real estate, said she went back to college to “learn what the young people know.”

“I want to walk into any business with a renewed confidence that I have got a contemporary technical education that is both relevant and needed,” she said during her speech to the Lions Club.

Speaking afterward, Shutters said the real estate “has had its challenges” during the economic downturn.

“I’m still in it, which is good,” she said. “I may take my accounting degree and do something with it in real estate or may go beyond real estate.”