Gadsden State Students In Top 20 At SkillsUSA

Students from five technical programs taught at Gadsden State Community College finished in the top 20 in the nation during the recent SkillsUSA National Leadership Conference and Competition in Kansas City, Mo.

The SkillsUSA Championship is a showcase for the best career and technical students in the nation.

“The philosophy of the championship is to reward students for excellence, to involve industry in directly evaluating student performance and to keep training relevant to employers’ needs,” according to the SkillsUSA website.

Students progress through local competitions to state contests, then to the national level, where they compete at a multimillion-dollar event occupying a space equal to 16 football fields in which thousands of competitors test their skills.

A team from the automotive manufacturing technology department earned a bronze medal, finishing third in the nation. Gadsden State’s Team K consisted of students Wade McDaniel and Tina Wallace of Hokes Bluff and Allen Talley of Southside. They were led by instructors David Smith and James Wilson.

The competition evaluated teams for employment in integrated manufacturing technology fields of computer-aided drafting/design, computer-aided manufacturing and computer numerical control machining.

Two programs from the Ayers Campus, diesel equipment technology and electrical technology (electrical construction wiring), placed fourth and 18th, respectively.

The machine tool technology program placed 13th in the CNC turning division, and the auto collision repair department took 20th place in the automotive refinishing technology competition. Both programs are taught on the East Broad Campus.

“We are extremely proud of our students and their instructors,” said Tim Green, dean of technical programs. “Consistently, we have competed and placed in the top of this prestigious competition and realize the value of the education these students receive. These programs continue to have a positive impact on our communities and our nation.”

Times Staff Reports