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William Monroe High School Students Win Interior Design Competition

Stanardsville, VA, May 2, 2019

William Monroe High School (WMHS) Senior Malikha Khan and Junior Jadyn Kowahl have won a statewide competition in interior design. Khan and Kowahl spent months preparing for the competition run by the Family Community Career Leaders of America (FCCLA) and were each rewarded with a scholarship to attend the Art Institute.


Approximately 60 students at WMHS are members of the FCCLA club sponsored by Charlotte “Lou” Berry. FCCLA is a large, national student-run organization for students in consumer science classes like architecture, culinary arts and fashion design. Khan is the historian and Kowahl the secretary for the WMHS club. According to Khan and Kowahl, members volunteer through the club in the community for organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, March for Dimes, the Pink Slipper Project, and Little Dresses for Africa. Members also run food drives and volunteer at the Arts Festival each year.


Ms. Berry encouraged Khan and Kowahl to participate in the FCCLA competition. She said, “these kids are terrific. They are great designers. I knew they were going to get first before they went.” To participate, the students had to tackle a prompt given to them months ahead of the April competition. The challenge this year was to create a bedroom and lounge space for a resort in Florida. The students had to design and furnish the rooms by providing samples of upholstery, carpet and furniture. In addition, they had to market and brand their work, including creating a logo. Khan and Kowahl chose “Hibiscus Wake” as their brand name. They displayed their work on three large poster boards which they then presented at the competition.


According to Khan, “there was a great team effort between Jadyn and I and we really learned how to collaborate in a creative and logistical way.” Kowahl agreed and added, “It was also really great to connect with other students at the competition who were interested in the same things and to see other projects.”


Greene County Public Schools is proud of Malikah, Jadyn, Ms. Berry and all of the students in the FCCLA club at the high school. The club and this competition embody much of what we strive to do in our schools and aligns perfectly with our Strategic Plan. The competition is a relevant, rigorous and personalized learning experience with elements of creativity and collaboration.