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Maxwell High School of Technology wins big at USDA Southeast Regional Junior Chef competition

MEDIA CONTACT: Meghan Frick, GaDOE Communications Office, 404-463-4246,

 Maxwell winners recognized for cooking competition award

June 12, 2018 – A team of students from Maxwell High School of Technology in Gwinnett County Schools claimed first place at the inaugural Southeast Regional Junior Chef Competition on Thursday, May 10 at Sullivan University in Kentucky. Each member of the team was awarded the offer of full scholarships and fees at Sullivan, an estimated $60,000 value.


On March 14, the team placed first here in Georgia at GaDOE’s Farm to School Shake it Up Student Chef Competition; that win allowed them to advance and compete in the regional competition.


The members of the team – Preston Gouge, De’Avion Frezell, Angélica Burgos, and Joyce Park – are all students at Maxwell High School of Technology and enrolled in the Nutrition & Food Science or Culinary Arts Career Pathways. Amanda Williams is their culinary arts instructor and FCCLA advisor.


“I had an opportunity to meet these students in person at our student chef competition in March, and I was blown away by their professionalism, initiative, and skill,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “Their work is a testament to the power of the work our public schools are doing to prepare students for life after high school. I couldn’t be more proud of the Maxwell High team and offer them my sincere congratulations on their win.”


Eight states – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee – participated in the regional competition, which was hosted by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service.


The competition teaches about school nutrition meals along with valuable skills in recipe development, nutrition, food preparation, food safety, marketing, public presentation, organization, teamwork, and community involvement. At the same time, participating students learn about the importance of agriculture and the economic impact purchasing local foods can have on communities.


Click here for more information about Georgia’s student chef competition.