Students participate in community events

The student representatives of the SkillsUSA organization of Hart Career Center observed national "Make a Difference Day" by participating in two community service events.
The 13 morning classes representatives chose to donate pumpkins and candy to the children at the Williams Center Head Start program, going to the Center to paint the pumpkins with the morning students. They also donated pumpkins, paint and candy for the afternoon Center students.
"It is important to be involved in 'Make a Difference Day' because it gives us a chance to be able to express our gratitude to the community through acts of kindness," Jerod Weaver, HCC student from Montgomery County, said. "The best part was seeing the smiles on the kids' faces because they enjoyed us being there."
The 11 afternoon classes representatives chose to hand out bags of candy and offered to paint car windows for Halloween today at Abel's Quick Shop from 12:30-2 p.m.
"Community service is a huge part of SkillsUSA," April Willis, lead advisor of the organization said. "Serving others and learning leadership and communication skills will prepare these students for any career they choose."
Students in eight programs are involved in SkillsUSA: Automotive Technology, Computer Maintenance and Networking, Construction Technology, Cosmetology, Diesel Technology, Graphic Arts, Health Services and Welding.
The organization is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. SkillsUSA is a national nonprofit organization serving teachers and high school and college students who are preparing for careers in trade, technical and skilled service occupations, including health occupations.
"The students recently completed a fundraiser," Willis said. "The money raised will go toward contests and activities. We hope to take a few field trips and do more community service projects. The students will enter district competitions in February (held at HCC) and at state at Linn State Technical College."
Willis says SkillsUSA helps make students better citizens. "I have really noticed that this group has a heart for service," she said. "I am so proud of them.
Morning representatives are Mackenzie Baumbach, Don Davis, Hydie Flowers, Dylan Kaufman, Allison Kribbs, Austin Logerman, Matthew McGlasson, Haley Rutherford, Caleb Reno, Lain Smith, Austin Speagle, Cody Swarthout and Jerod Weaver.
Afternoon representatives: Allek Adams, Eric Cortez, Ty Dickey, Raymond Hering, Cody Herndon, Kaleigh Jahn, Jeremy Polston, Edgar Ramirez, Clayton See, Melanie Soptick and Austin Terrill.
Other teacher and advisers of SkillsUSA are Donna Butts, Jackie Crow, Ron Crowe, Craig Knight, Bill Mitchell, Ben Nickelson, Kent Norfleet and Scott Ulrich.