Jackie Bockwitz and Anna Treichel

If you want to talk with two people who are enthusiastic about their work, spend a minute with HTC Floral Design graduates Jackie Bockwitz and Anna Treichel. Bockwitz, owner of Forever Floral in Coon Rapids, Minn., and Treichel, one of 13 employees at the shop, share an excitement about floral design and creating memorable arrangements for their customers. Their award-winning talents have put them in the spotlight.

Bockwitz, who graduated from HTC in 1985, took top honors in a statewide contest sponsored by the Minnesota State Florists Association. Along with a trophy and $1,000 prize, she earned the honor of representing the state at a national competition in Connecticut in October. It’s not Bockwitz’s first trip to the national competition. When she took part in the event two years ago, she won second place.

“This time I’m going for first place,” says Bockwitz, who began her career at Forever Floral as an employee in 1985. She and her husband, Brian, bought the business in 1996.

“I truly believe in the HTC program because I know the training the students go through,” explains Bockwitz, who was an instructor at the college for ten years before buying Forever Floral. She highly recommends the program to those interested in learning about floral design. Nearly all her employees are HTC graduates.

Anna Treichel has been working at Forever Floral since graduating from HTC in 2009. She took part in a competition sponsored by Koehler and Dramm, a Minneapolis wholesale florist, at the 2012 Minneapolis Home and Garden Show. She placed second in the competition, earning a trophy and $200 prize. A native of Princeton, Minn., Treichel has been arranging flowers since high school. She liked the hands-on approach to learning at HTC. “We were arranging flowers every day,” says Treichel, “and that experience gives you confidence when you begin your career.”

Both Bockwitz and Treichel like the excitement of competition. For the finals of the statewide competition, Bockwitz did not know what she would be asked to create until the day of the event. Finalists were given five minutes to view the materials and 25 minutes to design and create their entry. At the national event, competitors will face similar time constraints and be required to create three entries. “I’m looking forward to it,” says Bockwitz.

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Last updated by jhanson : 2015-02-21 15:17:27