Caden White, a junior at Glen Rose High School, will compete in the national FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) competition in Nashville this July.

White qualified by winning first place in Entrepreneurship during the FCCLA State Leadership Conference held April 6-8 at the Sheraton Hotel and Convention Center in Dallas. He also was awarded more than $8,000 in scholarship offers, according to Jill Lawson, the FCCLA advisor at GRHS.

White won at the state level with his unique development of an aquaponics business plan, Lawson noted. He is the third Glen Rose student to qualify for the FCCLA’s national competition. This was the first year White has been involved in the CTE (Career and Technical Education) program at GRHS.

“We have a really strong FCCLA program,” Lawson said. “He said from the first day, he wanted to do entrepreneurship. (Caden) had a lot of stiff competition in the state of Texas. His project was unlike anything (the judges) had ever seen before.”

Lawson said that White’s aquatic-themed presentation included graphics and a logo, plus a hypothetical business plan that walks the observer through the steps of opening your own business.

The top two in each category at the state level qualified for the national event. Lawson said there are more than 30 separate events, with divisions for sixth through ninth graders and ninth through 12th graders.

She said that the Texas delegation at the nationals will include more than 700 people, including officers, advisors and competitors. With entries from all 50 states along with Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, approximately 350 students will compete for gold, silver and bronze awards in the various categories.

In all, nine members of the GRHS chapter joined the more than 4,000 FCCLA members from across Texas at the state event.

Lilia Juarez and Jarren Noe each received a silver medal in the Family and Consumer Science Step One Assessment. Merari Beltran earned a gold medal in the Culinary Arts FCSA.

Lexi Sanchez and Aleksei Sisco advanced to state after taking first place at the Region II Conference in the National Programs in Action event with their Farm Fresh Friday Project. Although they did not place in the top six at state, they were recognized at the National level for applying for a Student Body National Award and positively impacting GRISD students through their project.

Mackenzie Campos competed at State in the Career Investigation event with her project designed to help her explore her future career as a Deaf Educator.

Ashley Hang competed in the Fashion Construction event. She was also recognized at the conference for being selected as one of the fourteen FCCLA students from across the nation that received the 2017 Kikkoman/FCCLA Japanese Exchange Program Scholarship.

Bari Douglas finished out her duties as the Texas FCCLA State vice president of public relations at the conference. She, along with the other state officers, led the conference of over 4,000 people.

The entire GRHS FCCLA Chapter was recognized at the state level for being an Outstanding GOLD Chapter for the chapter’s involvement this year and completed a well-rounded program of work related to state and national programs, public relations, service learning, and fundraising.

More information can be found online (www.texasfccla.org).