It’s been a very hectic summer and now that the school year is finally settling down, I can get you caught up on how Cawd did at the National SkillsUSA Conference in June.
We flew out early Monday morning. Like really early. Because we flew out so early we had time in Kansas City that day to grab lunch and dinner before heading to the Vermont meeting. Being in a different state and wanting to try the local cuisine, all of the students voted to eat dinner at a tiny restaurant called Applebees. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of it, but it was remarkably mediocre.
The following day, all the students competing had what is called their orientation meeting. This is where we all get in a bus and head to a Bartle hall, where the students will learn where and when they are competing. This was a pretty theater next to the hall we got dropped off at.
Due to the fact that everyone’s orientation was at different times we had time as a part of a group to wander around and see some of the exhibits and competition areas.
After a long day of meetings and wandering around KC, it was time to head to the SkillsUSA NLSC Opening Ceremonies at Kemper Arena. There was apparently 15,000 plus people in the arena and I wouldn’t doubt it based on the noise and heat.
During opening ceremonies Mike Rowe from Discovery Channel’s Dirty Jobs spoke to SkillsUSA about how more students need to get into technical education. He’s starting a show in October on CNN called “Somebody’s Gotta Do It“. During the opening ceremonies we all helped him to record the introduction to his show. We yelled something in unison like a cult. I don’t actually remember what anymore. Been too long.
On Wednesday morning some of us jumped on a bus and headed back to Kemper arena to compete.
Those of us not compete set up shop in the corner of Kemper and started trading pins. Chris ended up getting 40 something pins and even sold a few Vermont pins for actual money.
After we wrapped up competing for the day we studied for the following days competitions. When the group started to get stir crazy we went outside in this hidden courtyard and started playing ultimate frisbee and football. It was one of the best parts of the trip even though DBrady can’t catch anything.
On Thursday, Web Design competed and rather than continuing to slum it in school busses, Cawd got a ballin’ Town and Country mini van. On our way back from the competitions at the end of the day we got stuck in traffic blasting music. From the photo below you can see that DBrady is recording a video. There may or may not be a video of me yelling at traffic and remarking on how depressing it is to be driving a mini van for 30 minutes.
Once we finally got back to the hotel that night, all of the CTE group headed out to dinner. We headed back to the BBQ joint Oklahoma Joe’s just like we had infamously attended the year before. *cough* Dylan *cough* sick *cough*
After dinner some of us headed over to a hipster ice cream place.
While eating ice cream we walked around the shopping center and went in the Apple store. Below you can see some of the lavender flavored ice cream Christie bought. He didn’t eat it because it tasted like soap.
Finally on Friday, after spending the entire week competing, Cawd decided they wanted to compete some more and headed to a go kart track. Here is were Fortin, Christie and Brady suffered an embarrassing defeat at the hands of what looked like a 9 year old. What’s even more shaming is the fact that Fortin and Christie both have their own cars and the kid doesn’t even have a permit.
There were also batting cages were some of the group proceeded to then fail at hitting over .300 in the slow pitch cages. Those people would be Mr. Cronin.
At the end of the day Friday, we finally headed to closing ceremonies to find out how Cawd did in Pin Design, 3d Animation and Web Design.
We found out that 3d placed in the top 50%. Chris Fortin placed 15th in Pin Design.
And drum roll…
Christie and DBrady won the Bronze medal in Web Design!!
You can see their scores below. We found out from the judge after the awards ceremony that there was less than a point difference between the bronze and gold medal teams.
Here is one of the medals and scholarships they received.
And finally after staying up until midnight, all of CTE got up at 2am to head to the airport. There we found out our flight was cancelled and some of us had to fly to Denver, then Jersey and then Burlington. The rest of the group waited a few hours in the KC airport until I got sick of waiting and rented a van. 11 of us then proceeded to drive to Nebraska… yes Nebraska and then jump on a flight to Philly, and finally Burlington. After getting only two hours of sleep, hanging out in the KC airport for 5 hours, driving 3.5 hours to Nebraska and arriving in Philly at 6pm; Most of the group looked like this.
Even though the trip had a rocky end, we all had a great time and can’t wait for this years competition. And again, congratulations to all of the Cawd students that competed in Kansas City!