I just returned from one of my favorite annual venues, the Skills USA Nationals held in Kansas City, MO. This year was the 50th anniversary for the event and our Marine Service Technology group had 23 enthusiastic participants in attendance. Sadly, this was the last year for the event to be held in Kansas City. Next year we’ll be in Louisville, KY. The event has actually outgrown the Kansas City infrastructure.
For our group this year the work stations consisted of a variety of electrical trouble-shooting tasks. These represent the hands-on portion of the contest. There is also a written exam that counts as part of the overall scoring and this year we added a schematic diagram reading component as well. As we see more and more in the field, no matter what you can think of, there is probably some electronic circuitry involved in making a device work. So, with that thought in mind, we went with this all-electric theme for this year’s contest. The good news is that the attendees, who represent secondary and post secondary marine tech students from all over the US, by and large did really well. Judging got a bit tough when all was said and done. So, congratulations to all who attended, students and their instructors, these folks represent the best of the best and the future for marine service techs here in the US. I and the ABYC are really proud to be a part of this program. Looking forward to next year already!