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The Sullivan Central Skills USA team, Photo by Ned Jilton II

Success Story: Kylie Burky, 2013 SkillsUSA Scholarship

Here is a copy of the thank you note that Kylie sent the mikeroweWORKS Foundation:

Kylie Burky SkillsUSA 2013 Thank You Note with PictureThis is an excerpt from an article published by Times News (www.timesnews.net). For the full article, click here.

Kylie Burkey has done something no other Sullivan Central High School student has ever done, and probably something no other Tennessee student has done: she won first place in the national Skills USA cosmetology competition June 28 in Kansas City.

What’s more, Kylie, a 17-year-old rising senior from the Indian Springs community, has a chance to win state and nationals again next year.

Kylie, who said she has a 4.0 grade point average at Central, plans a career in cosmetology. Before Christmas, she is on a trajectory to reach 1,500 hours of practice, which would allow her to go to Knoxville over Christmas break and take the cosmetology licensing test.

After seven straight wins at the state level and 20 years as a cosmetology instructor at Central, Avery Putney finally saw one of her students win the gold. She doesn’t know of any other Central or Tennessee winners, at least in two decades.

“I’ve always loved doing my hair, and other people’s, since I was really young,” said Kylie, who began taking cosmetology classes at Central her freshman year.

As a state winner this year, she has two years free at any Tennessee Technology Center. She said she may pursue her instructor’s licence at the TTC in Chattanooga, but she plans to study business and marketing in college.

“I want to go to college for business and marketing. I want to open my own shop,” Kylie said.

As a national winner, she got a $100 Sally Beauty Supply gift card, a $250 pair of scissors, a tablet, clippers, curling irons and other items.

During the contest, she said the bronze and silver medals were not the ones she expected and that she was surprised when she won.

”I didn’t really think I had placed,” Kylie said. She said she thought she did a good job, her best, but didn’t know how the judges would rate her and others.

[She] said that without a $1,000 scholarship Kylie won, the competition trip might have been canceled.

The Central student competition total trip cost of $11,000 was offset by Kylie’s scholarship, for which Kylie and [her partner] Putney had to write essays.. The other $10,000 came from selling candles, donations, an annual golf tournament and Sullivan County Department of Education funds.