CNM Students Excel at National SkillsUSA Championships
Lesia Luviano, left, won the silver medal in welding sculpture and Solomon Hill-Burke won gold in extemporaneous speaking. Photo courtesy of Daniel Johnson, CNM Chronicle reporter.
Nearly 6,000 career technical education students from colleges and high schools around the country put their skills to the test in Kansas City, Mo., June 25-28.
Seventeen CNM students qualified for the national competition by winning gold medals at the state level. Nine of them placed in the top 10 of their competitions at the national event and seven more placed in the top 20 of their events.
“I am really proud of the CNM competitors,” said Sharon Gordon-Moffett, CNM’s director of Service Learning and SkillsUSA. “Each one did a fantastic job and they were all champions.”
Solomon Hill-Burke, a Transportation Technology major, won a gold medal in extemporaneous speaking, and Lesia Luviano, who is double majoring in Transportation Technology and Metals Technology, won a silver medal in the welding sculpture competition.
Solomon was given a topic by a panel of judges and then had five minutes to write and prepare his speech that could last no more than five minutes. The judges took into consideration the competitor’s posture, composure delivery technique and how well the topic was represented. Lesia, using welding techniques and equipment, designed and constructed a sculpture that consisted of a base, 12 roses with stems and a humming bird.
The other student competitors and their areas of competition included Allen Arrellano, welding; Benjamin Chavez, electrical construction wiring; Edgar Coyle, cabinet-making; Rozlyn Griego, customer service; Kimberly Hayden, job interview; Christopher Lucero, plumbing; Michael Mortimer, electronics technology; John Pierson, architectural drafting; Gabriel Raab-Faber, job skill demonstration; Rene Reyes, computer maintenance technology; Patrick Sanchez, industrial motor control; David Silva, power equipment technology; Alexxandria Snell, aviation maintenance technology; Jason Stanley, HVAC; and Alexander Weaver, precision machining technology.
Gordon-Moffett said that just as important to CNM as the competitors were the college’s four national delegates, including John Abeyta, Anna McCall, Jarrod Watson and Miranda Williams. Accompanying the students were 10 CNM advisors – Alain Archuleta, Phelan Gavaldon, Kay Hamby, Joseph Hirschfeld, Russell Johnson, David Ortiz, Richard Polk, Lawrence Simons, all from the School of Applied Technologies. Also attending as advisors were David Jackson from the School of Business & Information Technology and Donna Trujillo, member of the New Mexico SkillsUSA Board of Directors.
More than 20,000 students, teachers, educational leaders and representatives from 1,100 national corporations, trade associations and business and labor unions participated in this year’s National SkillsUSA Championships. An estimated $38 million was spent on the nation’s premier showcase of career and technical education students.