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Tech Center Students Excel at National Competition

Five Kent Career Technical Center students placed in the top 10 of their competition areas at the National Leadership and Skills Conference of SkillsUSA on June 20 through June 26.

Colin Verwys placed sixth overall in computer programming while Sophia Luettke placed sixth overall in architectural drafting.

Tech Center students Malachi Mooty and Thomas Badovinac at national SkillsUSA
Tech Center students Malachi Mooty and Thomas Badovinac at national SkillsUSA

The team of Patrick Badovinac, Hayley Lee and Luis Vinalay-Suastegui placed fifth overall in the Career Pathways showcase.

The four Tech Center students to represent Michigan as student officers were Haylee Lee, Oybek Kamolov, Dominic Modderman and Tenin Jabathere. They participated in leverage training with other state officers from across the country.

Seventeen Tech Center students made the trip to Louisville, Ky. to compete in eight areas: architectural drafting, Career Pathways showcase, computer programming, extemporaneous speaking, HVAC-R, interactive application and game development, robotics and telecommunications cabling.

Many of the students competed and excelled at the local, regional and state levels to earn the right to compete at the national level.

Tech Center student Joel Mattfolk at national SkillsUSA
Tech Center student Joel Mattfolk at national SkillsUSA

SkillsUSA aims to improve the quality of America’s skilled workforce through a program of citizenship, leadership, employability, technical and professional training for some 300,000 students every year. There are nearly 13,000 school chapters, and more than 14,500 instructors and administrators are professional members.

In another competition, student Karlee Robinson placed fourth in medical spelling at the national HOSA Future Health Professionals event.

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Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema is a reporter and copy editor, covering East Grand Rapids, Forest Hills and Northview. She is a Grand Rapids native and a product of Grand Rapids Public Schools, including Brookside and West Leonard elementaries, City Middle/High School and Ottawa Hills. She found her tribe in journalism in 1997 and has never wanted to do anything but write. For 15 years she was a freelance journalist for The Grand Rapids Press, covering local schools and government, religion, business, home & garden and lifestyles. She and her husband, John, think even those without kiddos should be invested in their local schools and made to feel a part of them. Read Morgan's full bio or email Morgan.

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