CRESTON, Iowa—Southwestern Community College’s (SWCC’s) welding fabrication team came home from the 2019 SkillsUSA Championship, held June 24-28, 2019, in Louisville, KY, with a third-place national finish.

The SWCC welding fabrication team (pictured above) consisted of Greg Moore of Clarinda; Lance Thompson of St. Charles; and Clayton Pattavina of Clarinda. All three individuals are students in SWCC’s welding technology program.

Other top ten national finishers from SWCC’s career and technical education programs included the following:
• Fourth place, Cory Marquardt of Creston, electrical construction wiring (post-secondary division). Marquardt was national champion in the electrical construction wiring (secondary division) in 2018.
• Fifth place, Lane Craven of Gilman, collision repair technology (post-secondary division).
• Seventh place, Makayla Flora of Adel, welding sculpture (post-secondary division).
• Eighth place, Riley Smith of Osceola, Clarke High School junior, collision repair technology (secondary division).

During the SkillsUSA Championships, more than 6,200 contestants compete in 100 events. According to its website, SkillsUSA is a multi-million-dollar event that occupies a space equivalent to 20 football fields. The purpose of the championships is to reward students for excellence, to involve industry in directly evaluating student performance and to keep training relevant to employers’ needs.