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Thomson students place first in skills contest

Thomson High School will be represented well at the state level of the Skills USA competition.

The Teamworks team, consisting of Jackson Reddick, Gil Usry, Bu Cowart and Brandon Carlton, won first place at the regional contest in February, qualifying it for the state competition in Atlanta next week.

In Teamworks competition, students have a day and a half to build a small structure, showcasing their skills in all four aspects of construction -- masonry, carpentry, plumbing and wiring, said their teacher, Barry Arrington.

McDuffie County students have placed at the state level and competed at the national level for the past three years in Teamworks, Mr. Arrington said.

The construction vocational teacher has even higher hopes for this year's team because it has had the advantage of a new construction lab and classroom at the high school.

"They all get to actually practice at the same time during the entire class period, instead of having to take turns because there's no space," Mr. Arrington said. "It's really making a difference."

Other Thomson High students winning at the region competition are Evan Hunt, who won first place for carpentry; Michael Studdard, who won second place for wiring; and Brett Jenkins, who placed first in plumbing.

Evan, Michael and Brett also advance to the state-level competition.

Although they did not have to compete at the region level, T.J. Ruff has qualified to compete at the state level for firefighting, and Bradley Hill qualified for related technical math.

Thomson High will have nine students participating in the state competition Thursday, March 11, through Saturday, March 13.

Web posted on Thursday, March 04, 2010

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