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Career Technical training pays off for Vina student

A Vina High School student is celebrating a career tech accomplishment after putting his skills to the test in state competition.

Nash Humphres, a Vina High School junior, attended the Alabama Skills USA State Championships in Birmingham in mid-April and brought home the first medal in the cabinetmaking contest for Franklin County in the tenure of current instructor Todd Johnson.

The three-day event consists of a contest orientation the night before the actual competition, where students take a written SkillsUSA Knowledge test and have five minutes to look over the blueprints of the project they will build the next day. For the contest, students are each given a work area and enough raw materials to construct the cabinet or furniture piece using the blueprints provided, hand and power tools from their respective schools and power equipment such as table saws, band saws and pocket hole machines to construct the piece in eight hours.

This year nine high school students competed, and Nash Humphres took third place in the contest.

“Nash really surprised me. This is his second year in the cabinetmaking class and his first year to go to competition,” Johnson said. “It was really a last-minute decision on my part, and I didn’t even talk to him about going until three weeks before contest.”

Instructors are not allowed to interact with students during the competition. Johnson said Nash worked hard and was the first competitor to have a finished product, well before the end of the time limit, “not to mention he even took it completely apart and reassembled it due to a hardware error.”

“Nash demonstrated in that eight-hour contest what I spend each day trying to get students to be able to do: to problem-solve and think for themselves,” Johnson said. “He encountered a few setbacks but recognized what was wrong and corrected them with what he had to work with.”

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