Juniors and seniors in high school may sometimes seem to their parents that they don’t care about things like school or any kind of work, but a select group of technical students on Friday could prove that feeling wrong.
On Friday, the SCCTC (Scioto County Career and Technical Center) held a Masonry Contest that schools were involved, including SCCTC. The competition consists of hard work and a high paced time limit, and yet those students competing were anything, but nonchalant about the work they were doing. In both the Junior competition room and Senior room, students were intensely involved in their work, wanting to perfect the projects they were working on that day.
Heading the competition was the SCCTC Masonry instructor, Larry Moore, who said one of the schools had even come from four hours away to participate. The audience for the competition consisted of judges, masonry instructors, and parents.
Don Begert, Masonry Instructor from Norton, said they stayed in Waverly last night in order to compete in the competition. He said he had two girls competing in the senior division and two boys competing in the junior division.
Not only were there parents, judges, and others at the competition, the Job Corps International Masonry Institute, regional director, Sal Filippelli. ”we work with the job corps programs, those interested can come and train with us, kind of like a pre-apprenticeship program,” Filippelli said. “We are sort of in the middle of the Vocational training and the apprenticeship.”
Also attending the competition was Tammy Tansey, who runs the training centers and takes care of all the apprenticeships for the bricklayers union. Tensey is the Data Administrator of apprenticeship and training for the bricklayers and allied craft workers in the entire state of Ohio and the Eastern half of Kentucky. “This skills’ competition takes place at different high schools.” She said. “At these competitions, they are only allowed to have two from each grade level, that would be two juniors and two seniors. We have our own competitions at our site, but we are here today to help judge and also to answer question for parents and let them know what opportunities are there, because not every kid is meant for college.”
Tansey continued to discuss how the competitions usually run in high schools, first they have two hours to make and complete their projects. She said you see a big difference from their junior year to their senior year. She continued, as to how the projects are judged. “They have lots of criteria to follow, some things like plumb and level, projects have to be squared and have to be in range,” Tansey said. “There are specific measurements and they must be tooled nicely, the design has to be correct and did they finish in time.”
She also discussed how it used to be a stigma, that students who went to a vocation school were only there because they couldn’t do anything else, but that is simply not true. That same thought used to be with girls in a program like Masonry, but in this competition, there were almost the same amount of girls as boys competing.
An instructor from Akron, Matt Simpson, who had four students in the competition said his students were excited, but at the same time a bit nervous. Simpson elaborated that the students do get time to practice before they come to the competitions and they get to practice the exact project for that particular competition. He also said next month is the state competition and, at that competition you only get to send one student per program, whether it be a junior or a senior. Students can compete in other competitions before the state.
One of the junior students, Joeseph Bennett, from Norton said he wasn’t surprised he got chosen to come to this competition, as he works really hard. This was not his first competition and he stated that he just stays focused and completes the project.
Rob Coriell from Portsmouth Block, was at the competition. Moore stated that Coriell donated the block for the competition. “We help out on any competitions and we help out with materials, if they are not out laying brick and block, we’re not selling, Coriell said. “We have been helping out here, since Moore began teaching out at the SCCTC.”
Local resident Pearlye Palmer and Karen Bell from Columbus were watching their children who were both seniors. Both ladies said it is exciting to watch the competition. Both parents said that they felt their children would continue with masonry, after graduating. Palmer had a daughter, Michaela competing and Bell had a son. Palmer spoke highly of Moore saying he had really helped her along.
After the students finished, Michaela Palmer spoke about how she felt about her project, “It was a rough start, and when time was up, I didn’t finish, that will take some major points off, but my plumb looks good, my level was good, and my range is awesome.” She said this was not her first competition. “I went to two competitions my junior year and three my senior year, so that makes five total,” shae said. She was a bit disappointed in herself, but quickly added that she could say she was there and chosen as one of the two top people from her class. When asked what she planned on doing after graduation she said, “I might just work at first on some things of my own and go from there.”
Palmer must have been harder on herself than the judges, and did a better job than she thought, because after the final results were tallied, she won first place in the Senior competition. Not only did she place first, but another SCCTC junior, Eli Webb won the junior competition.
SCCTC Superintendent Stan Jennings was at the competition. ” We are very proud of our Masonry program and Mr. Moore’s continued direction in making Scioto Tech Masonry what it is today,” Jennings said. “The work that the students turn out in his program speaks volumes to the talent being developed. Mr. Moore is a valued Instructor and his guidance, a cornerstone of our work. We are proud to host the Masonry contest and (always) look forward to “showing off” our students and the campus of Scioto Tech.”
And placing first in both grade levels goes to show there is some great teaching and learning going on in the programs at the SCCTC.
Reach Kimberly Jenkins (740) 353-3101 ext. 1928