The East Mississippi Business Development Corporation and the Mississippi Manufacturers Association presented their 'Head of the Class' awards to students across the area for their work in career and technical studies.
At West Lauderdale, two students, Chris Nutter and Amber Craven, were surprised during class with the awards, Nutter for most improved, and Craven for best overall.
"It's important for the business community to come in and say, it's a great thing that you're doing, we applaud it, we encourage it, we support it, we recognize it," said Jay Moon of MMA. "And we're encouraging you to move forward in your career options because we need you out there."
"I've tried so hard from the get-go and it's definitely paid off, all the hard work," said Craven. "And I think it will when I choose a career in the future. I think it will pay off."
The awards are given out in a variety of different career and technical fields every year.