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Students compete at national Skills USA conference 

–PRHS students and advisors attended the 53rd Annual National Leadership & Skills Conference in Louisville, Kentucky this summer. In all, 6,000 students competed in over 100 occupational contests.

The week began Monday evening with welcoming dinners for each state and their conferees. Opening ceremonies were held on Tuesday with the keynote speaker, Nick Tokman of the TV show “Deadliest Catch.” The remaining evenings were filled with baseball games, Louisville Sluggers, and Kentucky Kingdom Amusement Park.

As students competed, advisors received training in many different sessions. These SkillsUSA University sessions
informed the advisors of new and long-term methods of preparing students for the workforce and being job-ready on day one. Students continued competition through Thursday afternoon and, for many, this was the first time they had spent that many consecutive hours working in their occupational pathway. Students had debriefings with the industry persons who developed and ran their contests on Friday afternoon and that was followed by the awards ceremony.

PRHS students represented ten different contests for the California delegation:

  • Alim BenBrahim – Electrical Construction Wiring
  • Mason Brown – Telecommunications Wiring*
  • Iver Hansen – Welding*
  • Eli Lewis – Technical Computer Applications
  • Nick Matteson – Carpentry
  • Taylor Pafumi – Early Childhood Education*
  • Wesley Radecki – Power Equipment Technology*
  • Jonathan Russell – Diesel Technology
  • Mason Steiner – Plumbing*
  • Mikayla Stone – Welding Sculpture*

(*) received Skill Points in contest (awarded by judges for meeting industry standards of that occupational area)

  • Taylor Pafumi won the Bronze Medal, placing 3rd of 25 contestants
  • Mason Steiner placed 4th of 32 contestants
  • Mason Brown placed 5th of 19 contestants
  • Iver Hansen placed 10th of 48 contestants
  • Wesley Radecki placed 12th of 37 contestants


Mason Brown, Eli Lewis and Nick Matteson will return to PRHS SkillsUSA next year and compete in their pathway.

Anyone interested in contributing or volunteering for the Region 2 Conference in February 2018 should contact Randy Canaday (805) 674-4170 or



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