submitted: Thursday, February 23, 2017
College of the Rockies Congratulates Skills BC Winners

College of the Rockies was proud to play host to five skills contests for the Kootenay Region in the Skills Canada British Columbia (Skills BC) competition on Friday, February 17.

The competition is open to individuals under the age of 24 who are not yet at full journeyman status. Participants at the College competed in welding, cabinetmaking, carpentry, photography, TV/Video production and public speaking.  All but the TV/Video production contests were held at the College’s main campus.

Students from Selkirk College swept the post-secondary welding competition with John Van Gils coming in first, followed by Daniel Secor in second and Timothy Blair in third. Secondary school welding was won by Dwight Vanderveen from Fernie Secondary, with Jared Hutchinson, also from Fernie, in second and Mt. Baker’s Elijah Siewert coming in third.

Kyle Klippenstein from Elkford Secondary won the secondary school carpentry contest with Mount Baker’s Adrian Victor taking the second spot and Celia Berthelot, also from Mount Baker, coming in third.

The secondary school cabinet making competition was swept by Mount Baker Secondary students with Tanner Olsen taking first place and Travis Emel coming in second. The post-secondary cabinet making category was won by College of the Rockies student, Conrad Cameron.

Taking portraits of some of the College’s international students was one of the categories included in the photography contest. In the end Andrea Lockhart from Mount Baker took the top spot, Selena Atwood, also from Mount Baker came in second and Elkford Secondary’s Gillian House finished third.

The stunning Aboriginal Gathering Place was the site of the Public Speaking contest which saw the top two spots filled with Mount Baker students. Jurnee Blackmore took first place, followed by Quinton Komar. Sparwood Secondary’s Nikita Paskiewich rounded out the category.

“This competition serves to celebrate and reward students for their excellence in trade or technology skills and to create an interactive and engaging environment for the many young people who attended the competitions as spectators,” says College of the Rockies’ Regional Transitions Coordinator, Brian Conrad. “These events are part of the provincial initiative to raise awareness of technical trades and of the rewards of these career options.”

Skills BC is a non-profit organization that partners with government, educators, private industry, and labour to promote and celebrate skilled trades and technologies. With the looming shortage of skilled trades and technology workers in the province, Skills BC looks to encourage students to explore trades and technology career options by providing them with positive and exciting hands-on experience.

In addition to the Skills BC competitions, over 50 students from School District #5 were also at the College, participating in a Mega Maker Day.  Participants from grades 5-7 were challenged with building gravity cars, spaghetti bridges and newspaper furniture. The Mega Maker Day provided a fun way for students to learn about constructing.

Learn more about trades programs at College of the Rockies.