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Johnston machining students win state competition honors

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SMITHFIELD — Four machining students at Johnston Community College recently won honors in the recent SkillsUSA North Carolina championships.

Matthew Carmody of Selma placed first in the CNC turning specialist competition; Joshua Murphy of Smithfield placed first in the technical drafting competition; Marcus Vanderhelm of Selma placed third in the CNC technician competition; and Daniel Perry of Sims placed third in the CNC milling specialist competition.

“Once again, I am overwhelmed by the level of commitment the students have when representing JCC,” said Dwight Barnes, computer integrated machining instructor.

The SkillsUSA North Carolina Championships took place April 9-11 at the Greensboro Coliseum and Koury Convention Center. The conference was the largest showcase of career and technical education in North Carolina, with more than 2,500 career and technical education students competing in more than 120 hands-on trade, technical and leadership contests. These contests span more than 95 trade areas from construction, automotive and welding to drafting, public safety, culinary and cosmetology.

During the state competition, JCC students and other entrants worked against the clock and each other, proving their expertise in their chosen occupations. All contests are run with the help of industry, trade associations and technical experts and industry-set test competencies. In addition, leadership contestants demonstrated their skills, which included extemporaneous speaking and conducting meetings with parliamentary procedure. More than 100 industry partners, such as Lowe’s, Irwin Tools, 84 Lumber and ASE, help support the competitive events.

Top student winners received gold, silver and bronze medallions. Many also received prizes such as tools of their trade and/or scholarships to further their careers and education.

The SkillsUSA North Carolina Championships are for middle school, high school and college-level students who are members of SkillsUSA. First-place winners earn the right to compete in the National SkillsUSA Championships in Louisville, Kentucky alongside more than 7,000 other competitors from across the country in more than 100 contests.

SkillsUSA, formerly known as Vocational Industrial Clubs of America or VICA, is a national partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce by providing students with the opportunities to gain personal skills, workplace skills and technical skills grounded in academics. SkillsUSA has more than 350,000 students and instructors as members at the national level.