Students win construction competition

Courtesy photo Shown, from left, are Nathan Ouradnik, Justin Malmstead, Bob Bichler, Ian Valentine and Braden Reinhart

ESCANABA — On April 26, the NMU Jacobetti Center held the U.P. Construction Skills Challenge, which brings career and technical education students from throughout the U.P. together to test their skills against each other. The DSISD construction class a successful year. Each team builds a shed from a set of plans that they are given in advance, but on the day of the event the plans have minor changes to make it extra difficult. This project requires framing, siding, roofing, and electrical skills.

The DSISD construction class created a “dynasty” as the students put it this year winning for the third year in a row.

“This year was a little more difficult than last year, there were a few different things in the plans that were a challenge but we handled the situation well,” said Bob Bichler, third year student and Escanaba senior.

Jim Baxter, Construction Trades teacher at the DSISD CTE Center, said “competitions like this get the students into real world situations and teachers are not allowed to talk to the students so we get to see what they know and how they react on their own.”

Justin Malmstead, second year student and junior at Escanaba and Nathan Ouradnik, second year student and senior at Bark River, both competed last year and this year and “feel that the skills they have learned in their time in class has prepared them for work in the construction industry and the competition gives them the chance to prove it.”