Williamson’s reputation for producing outstanding tradesmen and well-behaved gentlemen was further cemented across the state as the 16 students in the SkillsUSA state competitions in Hershey, competing in groups and solo, took eight gold, four silver, and one bronze medal.
Gold medal winners:
- Painting Competition – Collin Henry 1W8, paint and coatings technology
- Automated Machine Technology Competition – Enrique Figueroa 1W7, Erik Hoover 1W7, Chris Frank 1W7, all machine tool technology
- Carpentry Competition – Ian Steveline 1W7, construction technology-carpentry
- Masonry Competition – Ronald Vann 1W7, construction technology-masonry
- CNC Technician Competition – Ryan Martin 1W7, machine tool technology
- Plumbing Competition – Tim Bozzelli 1W8, power plant technology
Silver medal winners:
- Team Works Competition – Dan Dickinson 1W7, construction technology-masonry, George Topalidis 1W8, power plant technology, Scott Pearce 1W8, construction technology-carpentry, Dayquawn Copeland 1W7, construction technology-carpentry
Bronze medal winner:
- Welding Sculpture Competition – Tyler Kutchma 1W7, machine tool technology
Also competing were:
- CNC Turning Competition – Isaiah Lewis 1W7, machine tool technology
- CNC Milling Competition – Jo’wan Livers 1W7, machine tool technology
- HVAC Competition – Moises Baires 1W8, power plant technology
- All gold medal winners are eligible to compete in the national competitions from June 20-23 in Louisville, KY, except Collin Henry because the painting competition is not held in the national competition.
Attending with the students were first-year SkillUSA advisor John Curran 0W5, paint shop instructor; Jim Schell, power plant technology instructor; Pete Zwolak 0W7, director of construction technology-masonry; and Mike Neville 0W0, director of construction technology-carpentry.
Curran said “We are excited about how well we did. Our competitors demonstrated that Williamson students have top-notch trade skills and conduct themselves like gentlemen. They represented Williamson very well in front of people from across the state. Now we can’t wait to go to the national competitions this June.
“A big thank you goes to Jim Schell for his efforts in making this competition a success and to Williamson for allowing us to make this trip. Sam Wrightson spent a full day interacting with the students and observing the competitions and that was appreciated.”
Schell said “There are many people from across the state who are thinking good things about what we do at Williamson because of the behavior of our students. They looked great and acted great. A woman came up to me in the parking lot and said it was refreshing to see young men with such a good attitude.”
Curran noted that Carmen Martella, director of machine tool technology, was missed at the competition and that Zwolak and Neville did a great job keeping Williamson a strong competitor after the many years of effort of Dan Hiltebeitel, the former director of construction technology-masonry, and Ken Nelson, the late director of construction technology-carpentry. He added that Hiltebeitel was a judge at the competition.
Curran noted that a great deal of the success was due to the pre-competition efforts of Zwolak and Neville who worked with their students to get ready for the event and the efforts of Lori Thoman, decorative trades instructor.