Southern’s Stephanie Scott wins bronze medal at SkillsUSA

Stephanie Maynard Scott, a student at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College, brought home a bronze medal from the recent SkillsUSA National Championships, held June 25 - 29 in Louisville, Ky. This event, by invitation only, was for first place state medalists in 102 competition areas for career and technical students held earlier this spring. It is the largest skill competition in the world.

Scott, who lives in Logan, W.Va., participated in the Nurse Assisting competition, which was part of the SkillsUSA 54th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference (NLSC), a showcase of career and technical education students. During the week, more than 6,300 outstanding career and technical education students – all state contest winners – competed hands-on in 102 different trade, technical and leadership fields.

Southern was represented at the competition by students Kent Bevins, Stephanie Scott, Christina Blankenship, and Cypriel Nwafor.

“It’s been such an amazing experience,” Scott said. “I’m so thankful for Instructor Ashley Starkey believing in me and encouraging me, and also my two children and husband for being my motivation!”

Scott is in the accelerated Medial Assisting program on Southern’s Williamson campus. She plans on furthering her education by obtaining an Associate in Applied Science in Nursing degree next. “I like to think of this as only the beginning of my success,” Scott said.

Ashley Starkey, Instructor of Medical Assisting at Southern, and SkillsUSA Advisor, traveled to Louisville with Southern’s competitors. “I believe success is driven by hard work, dedication and sacrifice,” Starkey said. “I saw that in full force this week during competition. I am so thankful for the opportunity to watch as students from Southern took their knowledge and skills and put them to the ultimate test.”

When asked about Scott’s impressive win, Starkey said, “Stephanie did a tremendous job in representing Southern. Her dedication, skill knowledge and personality will take her beyond any limit as her future continues. It was truly a pleasure and honor to have her represent our Medical Assisting program and our school.”

Southern’s President, Dr. Robert Gunter, echoed Starkey: “Southern is so proud of Stephanie, and each of our students who competed at the national SkillsUSA Championships,” Gunter said. “Every competitor at the national championships vied and won at the state level, so these students have showcased their incredible talent and drive. I’m proud to say our faculty have nurtured and encouraged that in our students every step of this process.”

Rita Roberson, Southern’s Vice President for Institutional Advancement, is also a SkillsUSA Advisor. “It is certainly an honor to congratulate Stephanie on her recent bronze medal win at SkillsUSA National Championships,” Roberson said. “It’s also an honor to congratulate all Southern students who participated in the state and national level competitions. Knowing our students have reached this level of excellence during their educational career at Southern brings pride to us all. Job well done students and advisors.”

During the national competition, students worked against the clock and each other, proving their expertise in occupations like electronics, computer-aided drafting, precision machining, medical assisting and culinary arts. All contests are run with the help of industry, trade associations, and labor organizations, and test competencies are set by industry. In addition, leadership contestants demonstrated their skills, which included extemporaneous speaking and conducting meetings by parliamentary procedure.

SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of students, instructors and industry that ensures America has the skilled workforce it needs to stay competitive. Founded in 1965 and endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education, the association serves more than 360,000-member students and instructors each year in middle schools, high schools and colleges. More than 600 corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions actively support SkillsUSA at the national level. Local, state and national championships, designed and judged by industry, set relevant standards for career and technical education and provide needed recognition to its students. SkillsUSA also offers technical skill assessments and other workplace credentials. For more information, go to: www.SkillsUSA.org.