Mtn Heritage SkillsUSA Club Spring Winners

The sound of a skill saw echoed along the vast corridor. The melody of hammers blended with the saws and the smell of freshly cut lumber soothed the air.  Parents, grandparents, and teachers lined the aisles of mortar beds and brick piles. Firefighters pulled and tugged on hoses to the beat of a time clock.  Drafting students peered into the windows of their computers as they raced against their peers to complete their design in the allotted time. Intense stares and amazement encircled both men and women cutting hair and adorning contestants in theatrical stage makeup. These were the sounds that brought back the memories of years past.  These sounds and smells of a young skilled workforce preceded the clanging of the medals that adorned student winners on the third morning of the SkillsUSA North Carolina Championships, held in Greensboro, NC,  April 27-29, 2022 at the Greensboro Coliseum and Koury Convention Center. Top student winners received gold, silver and bronze medallions. Many also received prizes such as tools of their trade and/or scholarships to further their careers and education. The SkillsUSA North Carolina Championships are for middle school, high school and college-level students who are members of SkillsUSA.  First place winners earn the right to compete in the National SkillsUSA Championships in Atlanta, GA alongside more than 6,000 other competitors from across the country in more than 100 contests.

Due to the Covid -19 Pandemic this was the first time that the live state conference event had been held since 2019.  Many students and advisors were excited to return to in-person competition.  Many schools including Mountain Heritage were beginning anew. Most schools were starting over with mostly underclassmen and fewer students enrolled as SkillsUSA members.  Most schools from the western region saw a vast decline in membership and participation from Career and Technical Trade students enrolled in their respective SkillsUSA sponsored courses.  Mountain Heritage was represented well with 6 out of 10 students winning.  This is an overwhelmingly successful  percentage for such a small school. More than that, all of the winners from Mountain Heritage were either 1st or 2nd place.

The conference was the largest showcase of Career and Technical Education in North Carolina with more than 1,500 outstanding career and technical education students competing over 120 hands-on trade, technical and leadership contests.  These contests span more than 95 trade areas from construction, automotive, and welding to drafting, public safety, culinary, cosmetology, and more! All contests are run with the help of industry, trade associations, and technical experts and test competencies that are set by industry.


The dynamic duo of Branson Fox and Dalton Ramsey were the masters of the Debate Contest. These young men debated a variety of topics related to current events and news headlines affecting us all on both the state and national level.  The two had to be able to debate each topic from both the pro and con point of view., They were required to bring factual information to the table to pull off a 1st Place victory.


Leaning in to his artistic ability while emphasizing the theme “United as One”, Lawson Higgins accepted a 1st Place medallion in the Poster Contest.  Modeling the tenets and principles of SkillsUSA, his 22 x 28-inch poster portrayed many aspects of  industry standards, principles, purposes and ideals of SkillsUSA and their importance in the workforce for 21st Century skilled laborers.

Nevaeh Buchanan, recited the SkillsUSA pledge with passion and fortitude to earn a 1st Place medallion as well. The SkillsUSA Pledge relishes in the principles of hard work and pride in the workforce. She emphasized the significance and importance of a strong work ethic and how that she had been raised to do her very best and to take pride in all that she does.

Advisor, Kim Higgins was awarded the first Glenn Barefoot Outstanding Leadership Award for her outstanding service as an Educational Professional and supporter of SkillsUSA.

Job Skill Demonstration is a contest that demonstrates a contestant’s ability to explain an entry-level technical skill used in the occupational area for which a student is training. Both Job Skill contestants from MHHS were a part of the Health Science Courses taught by Advisor Melba Hughes. Alex Shelton demonstrated basic vital signs such as pulse, respirations and temperature. Her 5-7minute skill demonstration earned her 1st Place in Job Skill Demonstration.

2nd Place Job Skill Demonstration went to Nathan Tipton. He demonstrated how take a blood pressure and pulse oximeter usage. Nathan will attend the National Convention with Mrs. Melba Hughes that will be held in Atlanta June 20-25.