(Bradenton, FL—April 28, 2016) Manatee Technical College students won 45 gold medals, 23 silver and 18 bronze medals at the 2016 Florida SkillsUSA Conference. Close to 1,000 students and over 100 high schools and colleges competed at the state event in Lakeland, April 25-27.
Manatee Technical College students won 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place for a clean sweep in three events: Automotive Refinishing and Photography in the college division and Firefighting in the high school division. Ryan Amundsen won 1st, Anthony Benafield took 2nd and Joshua Wood, 3rd in Automotive Refinishing. Amber-Lyn Rodriguez won 1st, Zoe Carrasco placed 2nd and James Strumpf, 3rd in Photography. MacKenzie Bryan won 1st place, Logan Savitsky, 2nd and Mateo Bedoya, 3rd in Firefighting.
“Competing makes you work harder; it’s a way to better yourself,” said gold medalist Rodriguez. Silver medalist Carrasco agreed, “My confidence and skills have grown so much.” The top students from each region of the state compete against each other and the clock through this career and technical student organization—the largest in the country.
Gold-winning teams in the college division included Eduardo Santiago and Joshue Soto for 3D Visualization and Animation; Jason Boone, Christian Lilly-Crum, Thomas Reese and Zachary Richey for Broadcast News Production; Claudia Hayes, Angela Yoho and Beth Zipperer for Community Service; Carlos Hernandez and Amity Hoffman for Digital Cinema Production; Jamie Anthony, Brianna LaDere, Nyla Mitchell and Rory Shelley for Entrepreneurship; Julieta Flores and Elizabeth Quintero for Esthetics; Thomas Frank, Jason Russell and Clifford Shields for Career Pathways Showcase-Industrial and Engineering Technology; Milena Cervantes and Karla Medina Hern for Nail Care, and Bethany Connor and Elizabeth Witter for Web Design.
Among the single gold medalists in the college division were Wesley Morey for Action Skills, Robert Lamberti for Internetworking, Matthew Pryor for Major Appliance Technolgy, Amber Surrena for Medical Terminology, Jarryd Lee for Men’s Haircutting, and Amanda Hinzey for Technical Computer Applications.
In the high school division, gold-winners included Eric Heidt for Action Skills; Jazmin Cruz-Rodriguz, Tyesha Lowe and Matthew Vreman for Career Pathways Showcase-Arts and Communications; Miranda Correa, Brighton Hall and Caitlin Roberts for Career Pathways Showcase-Hospitality and Tourism; Thomas Taylor for Collision Repair Technolgoy; Dylan Craig for Electronics Technology; Daisy Caballero for Medical Terminology; and Nashalye Nazario and Lizbeth Pina for Nail Care.
Other Manatee District schools also competed. Bayshore High School brought home 10 medals, and Southeast High School won 15.
Gold medalists will compete at the 2016 SkillsUSA National Championships in Louisville, June 20-24.
SkillsUSA is a national organization that promotes excellence, employability skills and ethics to students in career and technical education to better prepare them for successful careers.