Pinkerton students show off their skills

By Adam Swift
Union Leader Correspondent
June 28. 2012 10:21PM

DERRY - Five Pinkerton Academy students showed off their skills this week at the National Leadership and Skills Conference of SkillsUSA in Kansas City, Mo., this week.

SkillsUSA is a national partnership of students, teachers and industry leaders working together to help ensure America has a skilled work force, according to Pinkerton SkillsUSA faculty adviser Mike Eno.

The students taking part in the competition showcasing career and technical training were Brandon Clark and Samuel Davis from the computer technology program, Trevor Marcella from the electrical program, Brandon Johnston from the small engine program, and Stephanie Crepeau from the construction technology program. Crepeau attended the national competition for the second year in a row.

The students were among 34 high school state champions from New Hampshire competing alongside approximately 6,000 students in 94 competitions over the course of the week.

'Career and technical student organizations provide life-changing opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate soft skills (personal attributes that enhance an individual's interactions, job performance, and career prospects) as well as program-specific skills,' said Jack Grube, Pinkerton's Career and Technical Education director. 'Our students who attended SKILLS at the national level represent the best from CTE programs across our state.'

Clark placed 10th in the Internetworking competition, competing against 36 high school and 19 college students.

In the computer maintenance competition, Davis placed 30th out of 41 high school students.

'He also earned his CompTIAA+ certification as part of his contest,' said Eno. 'That was a two-part, four-hour test, and Sam and I learned the SkillsUSA national competition extends way beyond the A+ certification.'

Eno praised Crepeau for her hard work in placing ninth out of 40 students in the prepared speech competition. In outdoor power mechanics, Johnston finished 24th out of 42 students.

'He received a special certificate for going above and beyond,' said Eno. 'It states that he is ready to enter the work force in outdoor power mechanics.'

Marsella also received a certificate for going above and beyond, placing 11th out of 39 high school students in electrical construction wiring. As with Johnston, the certificate states that he is ready to enter the work force in his field.

During the trip, Eno said the students also enjoyed the 100-plus degree temperatures and a night at the Worlds of Fun amusement park.

Throughout the week, Eno said he was impressed with the work ethic and dedication shown by the students.

'I learned a lot,' he said. 'I plan on taking my newfound knowledge and work hard next year teaching the next group of students to prepare them for the huge task of winning SkillsUSA nationals.'

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Adam Swift may be reached at

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