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CACC puts on annual holiday floral sale

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s the Columbia Area Career Center’s (CACC) holiday floral sale comes to a close, students look back on their efforts and contributions, which began in late July. The Greenhouse Production classes grew the poinsettia crops for the sale, which were stared at the end of the summer, CACC teacher Sherie Rodekohr said. In addition to poinsettias, the sale included wreaths, candle centerpieces, succulents and swags.  

In Rodekohr’s opinion, the sale has gone very well. She said as long as the classes have products, they will continue to sell to anyone who missed out on the pickup hours.

“We have sold over 75[percent] of the items we started with,” Rodekohr said. “With an increased number of students this year, we started with more products than ever.”

Rodekohr has five sections of Floral and Plant Design, which is the first level of design, and one section of Advanced Horticulture or Advanced Design. Each student decorated an artificial wreath, created a table centerpiece and constructed a fresh greenery wreath.

Junior Lily Abraham, a student in the Floral and Plant Design, believes people should come and support their friends and school by purchasing from the sale.  

[quote]“It’s very interesting and fun to create your own products,” Abraham said.  “Once you learn how to make [the floral arrangements], it doesn’t take long depending on what the product is.” [/quote]

The earnings from the sale will help the classes continue to purchase supplies and make arrangements, Rodekohr said. With about 90 students, a lot of materials are needed for each project.

“While our goal is not necessarily to make a profit, but to give students the experience of creating designs and running a floral business, the money we make goes back into our ECA account so that we can purchase items and flowers needed for upcoming teaching designs,” Rodekohr said. “Students take home the designs they create while learning a new skill or type of design.”

Like Abraham, junior Jillian Barnett, is another student in Floral and Plant Design.  She took the class because she had friends make arrangements last year and wished to do the same herself.  

“[My favorite part is] getting to make really beautiful arrangements with my friends while learning new things,” Barnett said.  “It’s super fun to be able to sell what I make.”

With the new designs students learn in class, these skills students learn throughout the first semester are used in creating the wreaths and centerpieces. Additionally, student learn new techniques to complete the holiday items.

“Once they know the mechanics of construction and principles of design, it is up to them to add the creative touch,” Rodekohr said.  ‘They all did an outstanding job this year and came up with very impressive wreath designs.”

When the time came to start the holiday designs,  Rodekohr said her classes became very busy and intense. Each day, after Rodekohr shows a demonstration, students were expected to work quickly and efficiently to meet deadlines.

“Students appear to be excited and enthusiastic about creating the designs. Holiday time in a floral business is very busy,” Rodekohr said. “There is always a high volume of work to be done in a short period of time. Employees are expected to be productive and efficient. Having the plant sales gives the students a taste of what it would be like in an actual business. It is very rewarding for me to see the excitement and pride students feel when they discover someone purchased their designs.”

Were you a part of the floral sale? Let us know in the comments below.

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