Career Tech Matters by Dennis Franks // May 25, 2018
Superintendent Dennis Franks

And off she went to change the world.

That was the phrase that adorned Emma Bretz’ cap last night during the 2018 Completion Ceremony at Ohio Christian University.

Emma, who completed the Cosmetology program, said she read the phrase somewhere and has been using it as a guidepost to live her life. 

Selected as the 2018 Student of the Year, she certainly has changed a corner of the world through her successes at Pickaway-Ross.

This year’s president of our SkillsUSA chapter, Emma has been the spokesperson for every event that required a student leader, said Donna Patrick, SkillsUSA co-advisor and Cosmetology instructor.

But Emma’s leadership started in her junior year, Donna said.

“As a junior she was the student who got other juniors to be involved in SkillsUSA. Even as a junior she was a strong enough speaker that she did the presentation for the whole junior class the second week of school.”

A member of FFA at Zane Trace, Emma said she knew she wanted to be involved at Pickaway-Ross.

“I wanted to be impactful for other students and extend my leadership options,” Emma said.

That desire to lead was evident to Donna last summer when Emma and five other students attended the SkillsUSA national conference and spent a dinner brainstorming how to make Pickaway-Ross’ chapter better the following year.

“It was from the heart,” Donna said of the students’ conversation. “In my entire (15- year) teaching career, it was the most inspiring conversation I’ve ever had with students.”

Emma will return to the national conference this summer with fellow SkillsUSA members Remington Chrysler and Samantha Moore, who won gold at state for Community Service Notebook.

“She’s been a voice for our SkillsUSA chapter,” Donna said.

Emma will attend Wright State University in the fall and study business. Her ultimate dream, she said, “is to go to New York and start a small business that will grow into a big business: creating a line of beauty products for sensitive skin.”

Wherever she goes, she said she wants to take with her the kindness she received at Pickaway-Ross.

“I was very shy (at Zane Trace). At Pickaway-Ross, everyone made me feel at home and that it’s okay to be different.”

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