The Lindale High School Career and Technology students learned a lot in their engineering and architecture class, but Thursday they learned hard work pays off — literally.
In this case, the payoff came in the form of a $15,030 check.
The students drafted the plans for a 2,300-square-foot Ruby Trails home. Jerry Alexander, owner of Red Baron Building Co., built and sold their design. Alexander then donated a portion of the sale back to the Lindale students for their work.
“It makes me proud as a superintendent to know the students worked and helped design this, and then to come see the finished product, it’s just very exciting,” Superintendent Stan Surratt said. “I can’t thank Mr. Alexander and Red Baron Building Co. enough for their support and his imagination and thoughtfulness to create a program like this and come to us and want to be engaged with the schools and engaged with the students.”
Alexander worked with the district to formulate a plan to engage students in their community while giving them hands-on experience.
“It’s amazing because I didn’t even realize it until we started this project that these kids in high school can design houses on architectural software that I promise you, eight years ago, you had to hire a licensed architect to get that kind of work,” Alexander said.
The three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath home with a bonus room and luxurious master suite was a collaboration between LHS students, Alexander and local Realtors.
“I was a substitute teacher for many years,” homeowner Connie Orvig said. “When I found out the (students) did it, I thought, ‘How neat is that?’ Their ideas and just the difference in me at that age and what they can come up with, I’m thinking wow how time has changed because they put some modern things in here.”
For the students, it was an opportunity to be creative and to test out a possible career path.
“It was a challenge to just be able to design something that people would want as their bathroom and just as their living space,” student Josh Moore said. “But it was also fun being able to do this and to see it being put to use like we designed it.”
Holley Snow is the executive director of the Lindale Education Foundation and serves as the district’s communications specialist.