MANATEE — Showing up on time, doing coursework and giving instructors respect earned 18-year-old Matt Pryor a spot in the National Technical Honor Society.
“That’s what it’s like in the working world,” said Pryor, a student in the major appliance repair program, before a Tuesday night ceremony at Manatee Technical College where he was one of 136 students inducted into the honor society.
MTC officials said the students chosen to enter the honor society showed much more, including academic achievement.
“The criteria to be inducted tonight are quite strict,” said Vickie Miller, a MTC counselor and National Technical Honor Society adviser.
The society has been
honoring technical students for 30 years. The MTC students join more than 80,000 inductees this year.
Students must maintain an A average, be at least halfway done with their program and nominated by an instructor. Officials also look for students with leadership qualities.
“We know you are our future. You will be our future employees and eventually employers in Manatee County and throughout the state and throughout the United States,” Miller said. “And we know you will be our community leaders.”
Candles were lit at the ceremony to honor the different student attributes. Students walked across the stage to receive a pin from their instructor and special certificates of achievements as well.
Students from across MTC program areas — including accounting, culinary arts, digital design, massage therapy, medical assisting, paramedic and welding — were honored.
At MTC, Pryor’s focus in the major appliance program is on fixing items, including washers, dryers, refrigerators and microwaves.
“Anything that ticks,” he said.
Pryor is attending MTC one day a week while he works at an appliance repair company in the St. Petersburg area. When he finishes his program in the spring, he plans to work more.
For some students honored Tuesday, more education at MTC is in their future.
Samantha Illes, an 18-year-old dual-enrolled student at Lakewood Ranch High School; Rebecca Moreno, a 17-year-old dual-enrolled student at Lakewood Ranch; and Jessica Krumwiede, an 18-year-old dual-enrolled student at Braden River High School, all plan to continue studies at MTC in the fall.
“Since we already have the credits here, it made it an easy decision,” Illes said.
After finishing the patient care technician program, the three plan to enroll in the practical nursing program and ultimately work in doctor’s offices helping patients.
“I like helping people,” Krumwiede said.
Being invited to participate in the ceremony was proof hard work pays off, the students said.
“It was really exciting just to be nominated,” Moreno said.
Meghin Delaney, education reporter