Three SGTC students qualify for SkillsUSA National competitions

Published 9:02 pm Wednesday, April 7, 2021

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By Su Ann Bird


AMERICUS – Five students from South Georgia Technical College (SGTC) competed in the virtual state-level SkillsUSA competitions recently and three students received gold medals in their competitions.  These three students will advance to the SkillsUSA National competitions.  All five students, their instructors, and SkillsUSA advisors were recognized during the SkillsUSA Postsecondary virtual awards ceremony in the John M. Pope Industrial Technology Center on the Americus campus recently.

The three students who will advance to the national competition include: Jonathan Camp of Senoia, GA, for receiving first place and the gold medal for aviation maintenance technology, and Tison Smith of Macon, GA, and Patrick Hortman of Ellaville, GA, (team of two) for placing first in the additive manufacturing competition.  This is the second year in a row that Tison Smith has earned the right to compete at the national level for SkillsUSA competitions in the additive manufacturing competition.

In addition to the three gold medal winners, Regan Norman of Americus, earned a silver medal in the aviation maintenance competition and Donald Gay of Leesburg competed in the Diesel Technology competition.  Joining the students were their SkillsUSA advisors: Victoria Herron, Charles Christmas, Chad Brown, Chase Shannon and Kyle Hartsfield.  SGTC Student Affairs Assistant Vice President Vanessa Wall is the SkillsUSA Coordinator for South Georgia Technical College.

“This is a tremendous honor and I appreciate each of you and your instructors for going the extra mile to participate in the SkillsUSA competitions locally and at the state level,” said South Georgia Technical College President Dr. John Watford.  “To me, SkillsUSA validates what we do at South Georgia Technical College.  We are preparing individuals for the workforce and today each of you has demonstrated that you have the top skills to compete state-wide and nationally against the best students in your field across the state.”

South Georgia Technical College President Dr. John Watford (second from left) is shown above with SGTC Aviation Maintenance Instructor Victoria Herron, Gold Medal winner Jonathan Camp and SGTC Aviation Maintenance Instructor Charles Christmas. Camp will now advance to the nationals.
Photo by Su Ann Bird

SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce.  SkillsUSA serves middle school, high school and college/postsecondary students preparing for careers in trade, technical, and skills service (including health) occupations.

Hundreds of students participated in the SkillsUSA local, regional and state-wide competition and only the first-place winners from each event will advance to the national competition.  “I am very proud of our three gold medal winners, but I am also proud of each of you for stepping up to see how you measure up against individuals across the state.  This is a tremendous opportunity for both students and instructors to learn what industry wants in the next generation workforce,” added Dr. Watford.

The championships showcased the skills of Georgia’s students through hands-on competitions in leadership development, occupationally related, skilled and technical science contests. All of the gold medal winners will go on to compete against other first place winners from around the country in similar competitions.

SkillsUSA is a national membership student organization that helps middle school, high school and college students who are preparing for a career in a trade, technical or skilled service occupation. The organization serves more than 335,000 students and instructors annually through hosting workforce-based competitions for the students to compete in. For more information about the organization, contact Vanessa Wall at or 229.931.2713.