Steve Schmalzried, Richard Welsch, Josh Johnson, and Travis Stalder

Southwestern Community College (SWCC) automotive students Richard Welsch and Josh Johnson placed third in the hands-on portion of the 2016 Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC)/Iowa Automobile Dealers Association High School Automotive Skills Contest held on Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, at DMACC in Ankeny. This competition recognizes some of the best high school auto technicians in the state.

SWCC students qualified for the statewide competition following a written exam administered in October 2016. The top scoring teams were then invited to Ankeny to participate in the hands-on competition.  During the hands-on portion of the competition, autos were "bugged" with identical problems. The students diagnosed the issues during a 90-minute contest.

Welsch and Johnson, both seniors at Nodaway Valley High School in Greenfield, are taking courses through SWCC’s Tech Prep/Career Academy automotive program.  These programs offer high school students opportunities to take career and technical-related coursework at the college thanks to a cooperative agreement between SWCC and their local high schools.  Travis Stalder, also a senior at Nodaway Valley and a student in SWCC’s program, was the contest alternate.  

Steve Schmalzried, SWCC automotive repair technology instructor, accompanied the students to the competition.

Photo above (L to R):  Steve Schmalzried, SWCC automotive repair technology instructor, poses with SWCC automotive students Richard Welsch, Josh Johnson, Travis Stalder, and their winnings following their third place finish at the DMACC/IADA High School Automotive Skills Contest.