An annual fundraising event held in February raised more than $10,000 to help Buford High School students involved in Career and Technical Service Organizations attend national competitions.
The fourth annual Cookies and Cocoa 5K, which was held Feb. 4, drew 350 runners. More than 25 area businesses sponsored the event.
“We raised $10,000+ to help students travel to their Nationals competitions this spring and summer,” said Jennifer Wood, Buford’s CTAE director. “The community support is amazing. We are always overwhelmed by the support for our Career and Technical Education programs.”
A group of 50 volunteers from the CTSOs organized and worked the event.
As participation in Career and Technical Education programs and, more specifically, participation in CTSOs, increases, the financial needs for these organizations also increase. At Buford High School, CTSOs are very active, and the school sends students to state and national competitions annually, which requires funding.
Active CTSOs include DECA (formerly known as Distributive Education Clubs of America), FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America), FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America), HOSA (Future Health Professionals, formerly known as Health Occupation Students of America), Skills USA (trade, technical and service occupations) and TSA (Technology Student Association).
The 2023 Cookies and Cocoa 5K top sponsors were:
- Diamond level — IDC
- Gold level — Bare Bones Steakhouse, C. Laws Construction, Elite Sports Medicine & Physical Therapy, Jolie Visage Medspa & Clinic LLC, MST, Rico’s World Kitchen, Takedown Inc., The Drip Bar and The Outlook Gwinnett
- Silver level — Buford Business Alliance, Exit Realty Lake Country, Mighty Eighth Media, North Gwinnett Kiwanis and North Gwinnett Voice
- Bronze level — Burn Boot Camp, Dempsey Orthodontist and Dr. Amy Cates DMD Family Dentistry
FEATURED PHOTO: Runners in the 2023 Cookies and Cocoa 5K make a triumphant finish during the event, which was held Feb. 4, 2023 at Buford High School. Photo by Elizabeth Greer.