Last week, Carbon Career & Technical Institute was part of the 47th Pennsylvania State competition for Skills USA. Skills USA is an organization designed to promote leadership, teamwork, and motivational skills in the student's respective technical areas.

The Skills USA State competition was held over three days, from April 3-5, and was hosted by the Hershey Conference Center in Hershey. Nearly all vocational-technical schools in Pennsylvania were represented, totaling over 1,400 students.

CCTI had 35 students competing in 17 events. The competitions were designed to showcase the progressive knowledge and skills the students possess in their technical areas. CCTI walked away with nine medals from the conference, with seven students advancing to the national conference to be held in early summer.

The bronze medalists included: Tom Smith for Telecommunications Cabling and Angelica Miller for Esthetics/Theatrical Make-Up (with Cassie Rivera as her model).

Silver medalists were: John Halada IV for Precision Machine Technology; Brook Dunbar for American Spirit Scrapbook; the team of Bridgette Miller, Jessica Biegley, and Jeanna Struble for Health Services Career Pathways; and the team of Owen Henninger, Preston Smith, and Jake McKinley for Human Services Career Pathways.

Gold medalists included: Sandra Smith for creating an amazing door sign which represented the Skills USA standards; the team of Steven Rodriguez, Kim Pimble, and Katie Pickrell for their unmatched presentation regarding CCTI's school involvement with their yearbook for the Arts and Communication Career Pathways competition; and Jonathan Pieri, Josh Covell, Cody Fischer, and Derek Koch for their innovation project for the Entrepreneurship event.

A graduate of CCTI, Ron Dowd, competed in the post-secondary level for automotive technology and also placed first. Both the Arts and Communication and the Entrepreneurship teams will be competing nationally in Kansas City, Missouri at the end of June.

The next challenge for CCTI is to prepare for the National Occupations Competency Testing Institute and National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NOCT and NIMS) testing.

Last year a school high 96 percent of the students scored advanced or proficient on the tests.