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Local students earn honors at SkillsUSA contest

Winners set to advance to the state competition in April

By Miranda H. Lewis and Jeremy D. Wells

Carter County Times

Students involved in the carpentry, welding, and electrical programs at Carter County Career and Technical Center gathered at Ashland Career and Technical College and the carpenters’ and millwrights’ IKORCC Union Training Center last week to compete in the local SkillsUSA competition. SkillsUSA, a nationwide trade based education competition measures students proficiency in various categories. The competition not only gives the students opportunities to showcase the skills they’ve picked up; it also allows them to continue their education through practical application of the skills they’ve acquired.

Jerry Yates, Assistant Director of Kentucky explained that the union has been actively supporting ongoing education in the trades for some time, including providing judges and space to host the carpentry competitions.

“This will be our fifth year hosting the competition,” Yates said.

He explained that the competition tests beginning students in fundamentals like measuring, cutting, and joining with a sawhorse competition, while wall framing and roof pitch framing competitions for more advanced students provide an opportunity for students to exhibit more practical applications of the knowledge they’ve obtained.

Students who excelled at these regional competitions would move on to competition at the state level next, he said.

While CCCTC students enrolled in the carpentry program competed at the IKORCC union facility, junior and senior students enrolled in the welding program at the school attended the regional welding competition at Ashland Community and Technical College.

CCCTC welding students that are members of SkillsUSA were eligible to go and compete against welding students from surrounding counties related to their skill trade.

“They competed in different categories, such as the beginner level (fillet welds) for the juniors and the advanced level (open groove plate) for the seniors, as well as metal fabrication and sculptures,” welding instructor Dylan McDavid said of the career focused contest for his welding students.

Local SkillsUSA winners in welding included, Christian Manning, first place in Advanced (senior) Category; Jarrod Oney, second place in Advanced (senior) Category; Corey Hedge, first place in Beginner (junior) Category; and Kaylee Mabry, second place in Beginner (junior) Category.

“Carter County took 12 students to compete in the various categories and did very well when it came to taking care of business,” said McDavid of CCCTC’s SkillsUSA students that competed in Friday’s regional competition.

“The winners will have the chance to advance on to the state level competition in Louisville in April,” he added.

The annual demonstration of career and technical education skills allows students to compete in contests related to their trade and gives them the opportunity to build networks. Through the competitions, students gain confidence in their field and train for employer needs and future career goals.

“I am so proud of the hard work and preparation these students have put into learning their trade,” McDavid said. “I have no doubt that they will have incredibly bright futures ahead of them.”



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