Students Compete in SkillsUSA
Josh Fuller is installing a propeller blade on a reciprocating engine as fast as he can.
"It's a competition between different schools," said Fuller. "We just all get together and compete for different prizes and a chance to go to nationals."
In his first year at Linn State Technical College, he's taking advantage of the 41st annual "SkillsUSA.," which furthers learning in aviation. Winners of the competition receive tuition scholarships and a trip to the national competition held in Kansas City.
"It is for students," said Paul Light, the Missouri Director of SkillsUSA. "It's in industrial education and science and we have our own organization. It provides the leadership skills to go along with the skills in the world of work."
However, SkillsUSA isn't just for college students.
Eric Manning is a high school senior.
"It kind of highlights your abilities in the aviation field. I mean, there's not a whole lot of students who do this," said Manning. "I kind of pride myself in doing it. I enjoy it a lot."
Linn State Technical College has a population of nearly 900. This weekend the number of students on their campus nearly tripled. Nearly 1600 students from 72 schools in Missouri came to compete, and not just in aviation.
"I'd say there's probably 20-25 projects going on other than aviation," said Mel Williams, a Linn State Instructor. "There's automotive technology, automotive collision, heavy equipment, there's carpentry."
As for Manning, he has aspirations to graduate from college with a degree in avionic and start work in the field.
Manning took second place last year and this year he hopes to improve to first place.