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OTC students to compete for national honors

Some of OTC’s top technical and service students will travel to Kansas City next month to compete among the nation’s best for top honors in their fields of study.

The 20 OTC students will participate in the national SkillsUSA competition in Kansas City June 21, where state winners from across the country will vie for national honors in various categories including graphic communications, culinary arts, television production, computer programming and web design.

“The competition is designed to build leadership skills and showcase students’ technical abilities,” said Don Reeves, OTC’s faculty sponsor for the SkillsUSA group.

SkillsUSA is a national organization serving teachers and high school and college students who are preparing for careers in technical, skilled and service occupations, including health occupations.

“Only the top 2 or 3 percent of the students who competed get to nationals. There will be about 1,500 to 2,000 competitors. It’s a big honor just to get to go,” Reeves said.

Rob Page will represent OTC in the audio production division. He will have to research the commercial’s topic, write a script and prepare a radio commercial within a designated time limit. His state entry concerned the Ozarks National Waterways.

Page, 22, who has audio production experience from playing in a local musical band, said the experience in SkillsUSA has made him a more productive person with a better outlook on life.

“I finally woke up and decided it was time to get motivated. I want to work in movies as a sound effects artist,” he said.

Clara Thompson will be competing in the food and beverage division. The Hillcrest High School graduate is competing on the national level for the first time.

The 19-year-old will have to set up a formal dining setting, memorize the dishes on a three-course menu, seat, greet and service judges as well as answer any questions they may have about what’s being served, including how the food was prepared.

“I know it’s going to be pretty intense,” she said. “At nationals, you compete against everyone who won state. The menus get harder; the grading gets harder,” she said.

Steve Koehler is coordinator of publications for Ozarks Technical Community College. Contact him at




College Director of Communications

Phone: 417.447.2655


Steve Koehler

Coordinator of Publications

Phone: (417) 447-2666


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