Local students win honors at national SkillsUSA competition

Three students from Carson High School and one from Douglas won some of the nation’s highest awards at the 2017 SkillsUSA Championships in Louisville, Kentucky, on June 21-22.

More than 6,000 students competed at the national showcase of career and technical education. The SkillsUSA Championships is the largest skill competition in the world and covers 1.4 million square feet, equivalent to 20 football fields or 25 acres.

Local winners are Team C — Jiavanna Wong-Fortunato, Makaela Bigley, Brennan Peterman — from Carson High School, who earned the High School Silver medal in Chapter Display.

Gardnerville’s Alejandro Sanchez, a Douglas High School student, won a Skill Point Certificate in Screen Printing Technology.

Students were invited to the event to demonstrate their technical skills, workplace skills and personal skills in 100 hands-on occupational and leadership competitions including robotics, automotive technology, drafting, criminal justice, aviation maintenance and public speaking.

Industry leaders from 600 businesses, corporations, trade associations and unions planned and evaluated the contestants against their standards for entry-level workers. Industry support of the SkillsUSA Championships is valued at more than $36 million in donated time, equipment, cash and material.

More than 1,700 industry judges and technical committee members participated this year.

A total of 1,236 gold, silver and bronze medals were presented to students. Many winners also received industry prizes, tools of their trade and scholarships. Skill Point Certificates were awarded in 72 occupational and leadership events to students who met a predetermined threshold score in their competition, as defined by industry. The Skill Point Certificate is a component of SkillsUSA’s assessment program for career and technical education.

“More than 6,000 students from every state in the nation participated in the 2017 SkillsUSA Championships,” said SkillsUSA executive director Tim Lawrence. “This showcase of career and technical education demonstrates our SkillsUSA partnership at its finest. Our students, instructors and industry partners work together to ensure that every student excels. This program expands learning and career opportunities for our members.”

The SkillsUSA Championships event is held annually for students in middle school, high school or college/postsecondary programs as part of the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference. More than 300,000 students and advisers join SkillsUSA annually, organized into more than 18,000 sections and 52 state and territorial associations. The national nonprofit partnership of students, instructors and industry is a verified talent pipeline for America’s skilled workforce that’s working to help solve the skills gap.

For information, go to www.SkillsUSA.org.


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