CGL scores a podium finish

SMK Convent Green Lane (CGL) has clinched the third placing in the inaugural Junior Achievement (JA) Asia Pacific Company of the Year Competition held in Hong Kong.

The victory was made sweeter as it was the first time in recent history the school had sent a team to compete internationally.

“We have had students, like (squash world champion) Nicol David, who competed internationally as well as students who have won overseas trips as prizes.

“However, this should be the first time a team had been sent to represent the school and country in an international competition,” said principal Lim Yen Lee.

A five-member student team was chosen to represent the school’s winning ‘company’ — Athena Enterprise — who had triumphed over teams from Penang and Klang Valley to represent the country.

Producing five types of homemade handicraft, the team stood out from the competition during the three judging rounds held between Jan 17 and Jan 20.

Athena Enterprise managing director Win-nie Lee, 16, said 10 countries took part in the event held in Hong Kong.

Company sales director Bernice Leow, also 16, said one of the biggest challenges for them was to face the chilly end-of-winter weather.

“The temperature was supposedly to be around 18 to 19 degrees but dropped to 10 degrees, and the team members only brought normal jackets with them to showcase their crafts at the trade exhibition at Central Star Ferry Pier 7,” she said.

Assistant operations director Wooi Sze Lyn, 16, said she was quite nervous when making their presentations to the judges.

“Athena Enterprise has five products — homemade batik bags, origami greeting cards, handwoven boxes, eggshell book-marks and fridge magnets in the shape of cupcakes.

For Joanne Ooi, and G. Sankeri, both 17, the experience had been one of a kind for them, especially when it was their first time taking a plane.

Ooi, the marketing director, described the trip as wonderful and their visit to a fishing village at Lamma Island was memorable.

Purchasing manager Sankeri said meeting other participants at the event was one of the best parts in the trip.

The JA Asia Pacific Company of the Year Competition was jointly organised by FedEx Express JA Worldwide, a United States-based organization aimed at empowering young people to achieve economic success.

Cozy Care, a student-run company from Turkmenistan that produced comfortable portable cushions, and The Herd from Thailand, that manufactured Thai-English phrase cards targeted at tourists, won first and second place respectively.

The local leg of the competition is called the Young Enterprise Programme and is organised by the American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM).

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