Just before Christmas break, students from the Masonry, Carpentry, and Paint Shops took part in the SkillsUSA competitions in the shops, showing off their high level trade skills.
In masonry, Zach Faust 2W0 came in first, Jim McGarrigle 2W1 came in second, and Bob Jones 2W0 came in third. In carpentry, Austin Lacey 2W1 came in first and Joe Needham 2W1 came in second. In paint, Joe Spillman 2W1 came in first.
Masonry competitors were all seniors and juniors (who were required to compete) and several freshmen (who volunteered). The carpenters were juniors Austin Lacey and Joe Needham. The painters were seniors Mark Mathis and Jim Moorhead and juniors Vatango “Tango” Donzo, Nathan Lohr, and Joe Spillman.
First-place winners will represent Williamson in the district competitions in February. As long as they continue to win gold, they will go to state competitions in April and national competitions in Louisville, KY, in June, representing Williamson and the entire state of Pennsylvania.
Peter Zwolak 0W7, SkillsUSA advisor and director of construction technology-masonry, said “We always say Williamson is the best trade school in the country and these competitions give us the opportunity to demonstrate this. The campus competitions are an excellent opportunity for our students to demonstrate their skills in a high-paced environment while being judged. They demonstrate safety, quality, and production. It also is a good opportunity to promote shop pride.”
Mike Neville 0W0, director of construction technology-carpentry, said “The carpentry students demonstrated speed, accuracy, and safety in a timed project that reflected a real-world environment. It was a difficult framing project and they did a great job.”
Glenn Tomlinson 7W5, director of paint and coatings technology, said “SkillsUSA projects expose students to a real world experience while competing against time and their fellow classmates. Their projects included painting windows, doors, and trim, and hanging wallpaper.”
The masonry competition attracted 22 judges, including many alumni. Among those attending were (a complete list was not possible): from Bricklayers & Allied Crafters #1 – Matt Stafford, Rich Neucomb, and James Calvanese; Rich Conley 9W9; John Fox 6W9; Dan Hiltebeitel, former Williamson masonry instructor; Brendan Kneafsey 0W9; Jim Ramsey; Davon Lewis 1W9; Scott Ferris; John Grablewski 0W7; Keith McEneaney 0W8; Mike Falo 0W2; and George Philips 0W7.
Paint judges were: Leon Hosier 1W1, Mike Lynch 1W1, Robert McNabb 7W3, and Glenn Tomlinson 7W5.
Diener Brick Co., of Collingswood, NJ, with some help from Mike Clement 8W2, made a donation to the masonry competition.