Eastland-Fairfield CTC News Article

Nine Students will Represent EFCTS at SkillsUSA Nationals

Five students wearing red suit jackets representing SkillsUSA. Each proudly wears a medal around their neck.Congratulations to all of our SkillsUSA students following a very successful series of competitions at the state championship.


May 3, 2023  |  EFCTS 

Throughout the month of April, more than 5,000 competitors, business partners, instructors, and vendors gathered to compete in over 100 contests. The month-long series of contests came together on April 25-26, 2023, for its final days for state-wide competitions. 

Eastland-Fairfield will send nine students from four different programs to the SkillsUSA national conference following a series of medal-winning performances at the state competition, held last week. Five representatives will come from Eastland Career Center while two students from the Cyber Security satellite program housed in New Albany High School will round out the list of EFCTS students heading to Nationals. Fourteen students between the District’s three SkillsUSA chapters earned a silver or bronze medal, while an additional seven left the Greater Columbus Convention Center having placed inside the top 5.

Eastland-Fairfield has three chapters that are members of the national SkillsUSA organization. Each campus has its own chapter and the Cyber Security program, housed at New Albany-Plain Local High School, serves as a chapter representing satellite programs. SkillsUSA advances only the 1st-place finisher from each state to the national competition. Rankings from each chapter are listed below.

The nine students that have placed first in their respective events will now prepare for the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, which will be held June 19-23, 2023, in Atlanta, Georgia.

Students from the ECC SkillsUSA chapter take a selfie among the crowd wearing their red suit jackets.

Seven students from Eastland Career Center will move on to SkillsUSA nationals after receiving Gold ratings in their respective events. Of those competing students, 14 received a Gold, Silver, or Bronze rating.

Name (Year, Homeschool, Program) - Event, Rank
Jack Preece (Sr., Teays Valley, Graphic Design) - Photography, Gold $
Ayden Cuckler (Jr., Groveport Madison, Aviation) - Drone Competition, Bronze
Jordan Cohen (Sr., Reynoldsburg, Aviation) - Drone Competition, Bronze
Gabrielle Backer (Sr., Pickerington North, Graphic Design) - T-Shirt Design, Gold $
Payton Niswander (Sr., Bexley, Auto Body & Paint) - Collision Repair Technology, Bronze
Lillian (Leon) Wright (Sr., Teays Valley, Graphic Design), Elaina Huntwork (Sr., Liberty Union, Graphic Design), and Thomas Norris (Sr., New Albany, Graphic Design) - Promotional Bulletin Board, Gold $
Aicha Camara (Sr., Reynoldsburg, Pre-Dental) - Dental Assisting, Silver
Sarah Spencer (Sr., Hamilton Twp., Pre-Dental) - Dental Assisting, Bronze
James Colachis (Sr., New Albany, Pre-Engineering) - CNC Programming, Silver
Charles Neville (Sr., Canal Winchester, Electrical) - Electrical Construction Wiring, Bronze
Rowan Toole (Sr., Reynoldsburg, Welding) - Sheet Metal, Gold $
Sean Garrettson (Sr., Fairfield Union, Automotive) - Automobile Maintenance & Light Repair, Gold $
Michael Smith (Jr., Fairfield Union, Welding) - Sheet Medal, 4th place

Massar Yade and Iromy Mendoza Lopez pose with their SkillsUSA Medals inside the FCC lobbyCongratulations to FCC students Massar Yade (left) and Iromy Mendoza Lopez (right) on spectacular showings at the SkillsUSA State Championships in April.

Fairfield Career Center featured two students that medaled in their respective events. Seniors Massar Yade (Groveport Madison, Pharmacy) earned a Silver rating, second place finish in the Medical Math category, while Iromy Mendoza Lopez (Canal Winchester, Pre-Nursing) earned Bronze and placed third in the Nurse Assisting category. Both students were state competitors as juniors in 2022, as well.

Seniors Steven Schulze (Reynoldsburg, HVAC) and Oluwashubomi Olubajo (Pickerington North, Pre-Dental) were among six FCC students to place inside the top 5 in their respective events. Schulze did so in the HVAC/R senior competition, while Olubajo accomplished the feat in the Job Demonstration A category, both placing fifth overall. 

Name (Year, Homeschool, Program) - Event, Rank

Massar Yade (Sr., Groveport Madison, Pharmacy) - Medical Math, Silver

Iromy Mendoza Lopez (Sr., Canal Winchester, Pre-Nursing) - Nurse Assisting, Bronze

Steven Schulze (Sr., Reynoldsburg, HVAC) - HVAC/R senior, 5th place

Oluwashubomi Olubajo (Sr., Pickerington North) - Job Demonstration A, 5th place

Quiz Bowl Team, 5th place: Alexiya Lucas (Jr., Fairfield Union), Naoimi Watson (Jr., Pickerington Central), Tori Glover (Pickerington Central), Aliza Bracewell (Sr., Pickerington North). 


Liam Otten in a suit and tie leans up against a tree.Liam OttenCyber Security senior Liam Otten (New Albany) and junior Zane Tanner (New Albany) were crowned state champions in their respective events and will advance to represent Eastland-Fairfield’s satellite chapter at the SkillsUSA national conference in Atlanta, Georgia, this summer. Otten received a Gold rating and placed first overall in the Internetworking Competition. Tanner earned a gold rating and also placed first overall in the Customer Service category.

Two teams of Cyber Security students placed third or better in their respective competitions, as well. The team of Corey Bank (Sr., New Albany), Ben Bilenko (Jr., New Albany), Zachary Castro (Jr., New Albany), Logan Kessler (Jr., Pickerington Central), and William Staufenberg (Jr., New Albany) combined to form a second-place squad in the Quiz Bowl competition. Senior Teja Akella and junior Taylor Johnson, both from New Albany, teamed up to placed earn third place in the Cyber Security category.

The four-hour competitions tested students in multiple aspects of the information technology field, customer service, and general knowledge through hands-on physical and virtual labs, written tests, face-to-face interviews, and team-based quiz sessions.

Name (Year, Homeschool, Program) - Event, Rank

Liam Otten (Sr., New Albany, Cyber Security) - Internetworking, GOLD $

Zane Tanner (Jr., New Albany, Cyber Security) - Customer Service, GOLD $

Corey Bank (Sr., New Albany), Ben Bilenko (Jr., New Albany), Zachary Castro (Jr., New Albany), Logan Kessler (Jr., Pickerington Central), and William Staufenberg (Jr., New Albany) - Quiz Bowl, SILVER

Teja Akella (Sr., New Albany, Cyber Security) and Taylor Johnson (Jr., New Albany, Cyber Security) - Cyber Security, BRONZE

$ denotes the individual has qualified for the SkillsUSA national competition

About SkillsUSA
SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. A nonprofit national education association, SkillsUSA serves middle-school, high-school and college/postsecondary students preparing for careers in trade, technical and skilled service occupations. SkillsUSA serves more than 333,527 students and instructors annually. SkillsUSA has served nearly 14 million annual members cumulatively since 1965 and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Labor as a successful model of employer-driven workforce development. 

Eastland-Fairfield Career & Technical Schools is the seventh-largest career and technical education district, geographically, in the State of Ohio. We serve more than 5,000 students in 16 school districts throughout Franklin, Fairfield and Pickaway counties. Eastland-Fairfield provides more than 35 programs to over 1,600 high school and adult students. The district has two main campuses — Eastland Career Center in Groveport and Fairfield Career Center in Carroll, with satellite locations at four of our associate high schools: Gahanna Lincoln, Groveport Madison, New Albany, and Pickerington North. 

Founded in 1969. Eastland-Fairfield Career & Technical Schools’ mission is to engage, enrich, and equip students every day in every experience. We prepare students to pursue their life’s next E: Employment, Enlistment, Entrepreneurship, and/or additional Education. Visit us online at www.eastlandfairfield.com and follow us on TwitterFacebookInstagramYouTube, and LinkedIn for regular updates, fun content and information.

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