Dhruv Patel, a fourth grader at East Lake Elementary School, celebrated with Gov. Brian Kemp today at the Governor’s Awards Luncheon. Patel won second place in the 2019 Manufacturing Appreciation Week (MAW) student design contest in the kindergarten through fifth grade category. He received a $300 scholarship check presented by Anne Kaiser, Vice President of Community and Economic Development at Georgia Power, during the luncheon on April 18 at the Georgia International Convention Center in College Park, Ga.
Patel said he is interested in art, and it runs in his family as well. His older brother won a design award in 2018, which inspired him to enter the design contest.
“When I saw my brother won last year, I was kind of jealous and wanted to show him that I could do it, too,” Patel said. “When he won last year, I saw all these Georgia manufacturers and I wanted to learn more and appreciate them.”
Students from around the state submitted design entries featuring Georgia manufacturers and their products. From East Lake Elementary School, Patel also represented Southern Crescent Technical College.
“The design contest exposes students to the rich diversity of career opportunities available in manufacturing, and it fosters a deeper understanding and appreciation for how critical manufacturing is to the prosperity of their own local communities,” said Richard Warner, noted Georgia journalist and emcee of the event. “Now more than ever, we need to make young people aware that manufacturing is an area where they can express their creativity, and where their skills are rewarded.”
The Governor’s Awards Luncheon is the highlight of MAW, celebrated this year April 15 through 19. Co-hosted by the Technical College System of Georgia and the Georgia Department of Economic Development, MAW brings attention to the tremendous contribution manufacturing makes on Georgia’s economic growth. According to Gov. Kemp, nearly 9,802 manufacturing facilities are located in Georgia, providing 406,602 jobs and generating more than $22.7 billion in wages for Georgia’s citizens. He noted manufacturing contributed more than $61 billion to the state’s economy last year.
This is the 25th 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 Aprio.