Teacher Aaron Biro, front left, with grade 12 students Garrett Hanson, left, and Asher Davey going over the truck Davey rebuilt the engine in.MHN PHOTO SAMANTHA JOHNSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Grade 12 Crescent Heights students Garrett Hanson and Asher Davey received first place in the automotive category at the South East Regional Skills Canada Competition in Medicine Hat on April 21.

As a result, they travelled to Edmonton to compete in the provincial competition on May 3-4 against 19 high school and 14 post secondary students, who all placed first in their respective regional competitions throughout the province.

Hanson managed to secure third place and Asher ended up taking 11th.

“Eleventh is alright,” said Davey. “I kind of beat myself up over it because I know I made lots of stupid mistakes.”

For Hanson, it doesn’t change anything.

“I was going for fun, I wasn’t going to try and win,” said Hanson.

Both competitions were exactly the same, although there were less stations at provincials and each competitor worked on their own, whereas at regionals they worked as a team and were able to play to each other’s strengths.

“It’s different not to have an extra set of hands, but realistically the challenge is basically the same, knowledge-wise.” stated Asher.

Hanson added, “you can’t delegate things to other people. When we did regionals, one person learned how to do one thing and the other learned how to do something else. Going into a station, we knew we had to do this, and this, and we wouldn’t be trying to scramble to figure out what to do.”

Automotive teacher Aaron Biro says he likes to handpick students for the competition who have aptitude and proficiency along with the disposition to represent the school and region.

“These guys were in my first semester course and they were working on a pretty big project,” explained Biro. “They weren’t in the same class, but both were rebuilding small block Chev 350s right from the bottom up and they showed good aptitude and attention to detail.”

Both students successfully managed to get their respective engines back together, and Biro then travelled with them to Edmonton.

Last Friday Davey secured a position in an auto body shop and feels he will stick with it for a while.

“I’m more into the mechanical side but having a well-rounded mechanics skill set is never a bad idea, so getting into auto body is a cool experience.”

Davey says he is considering going to SAIT for mechanics and would like to work in a shop, but he’s more geared towards custom after-market modifications.

Hanson works on a farm, which requires mechanical knowledge.

“My hope is to at some point get into heavy duty mechanics, he said. “That and the agricultural side of it is all interesting.”

While both are graduating this year, they agreed their automotive classes at Crescent Heights were lots of fun and both will miss them.

By SAMANTHA JOHNSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on May 17, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Medicine Hat News   Medicine Hat, Alberta

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