North Carroll High School junior Troy Perey has been elected statewide president of the Vocational Industrial Clubs of America and will accompany nine fellow students from the county to Kansas City, Mo., for the national convention and championships in June.
After a smart showing at the state VICA championships last weekend, nine of the first-place winners from Carroll will compete nationally June 26-30 in skills such as commercial sewing and diesel mechanics.
An additional 13 students from the Carroll County Career and Technology Center participated, many of them placing in the top three in their contests. Only first-place winners qualify to attend the national championships.
Troy, 16, was not among the statewide champions, but he said VICA membership, competitions and training workshops offer vocational students an advantage in finding jobs.
"I think it provides them with an opportunity to see how good they really are against other people and to see if they really know how to apply it," Troy said.
"It's helped me to get jobs and it looks wonderful on resumes," he said, particularly praising the training offered through the club.
"Anything more you put on a resume makes you look better than the next guy," Troy said.
Catherine Engel, principal of the career center, said the championships give vocational students an opportunity to excel, just as sports do for athletes.
"Businesses help set up and run competitions," Ms. Engel said, and sometimes offer scholarships. One Carroll student received a $5,000 scholarship this year, she said.
The Carroll students who placed, and their home high schools, are:
First place: Kelly Hiltner, Westminster High, commercial sewing; Amy Finley, WHS, practical nursing; Gabe Morris, North Carroll High, precision machining; Jessica Lawrence, NCHS, job-skill demonstration with Tanya Zepp, NCHS, assisting as a model; Jess Dennings, Francis Scott Key High, diesel mechanics; Roy Bauerlein, WHS, welding.
Also winning first place in the health occupation knowledge bowl was the team of Chris Fisher, WHS; Jennifer Pease, WHS; Andrea Vanier, South Carroll High; and Shelley Hinkle, WHS.
Second place: Beth Butcher, Liberty High, commercial sewing; Kathy Bumstead, NCHS, prepared speech; Christina Milstred, WHS, job-skill demonstration with Shannon Miller, WHS, assisting as a model; Rebecca Reigert, WHS, job-skill demonstration; Mike Wantz, WHS, diesel mechanics; and Jessica Magin, WHS, extemporaneous speech.
Third place: Sara Moore, NCHS, job-skill demonstration with Connie Fogle, FSK, as a model.
Other students who participated were Sarah Dyky, WHS, commercial baking; Dawn Groom, WHS, cake decorating; Bridget Dowery, FSK, cake decorating; and Mark Kurtz, NCHS, culinary arts.