Clarion Career Center honors 94 seniors

From staff reports

The Clarion County Career Center held its senior recognition program Wednesday at Keystone High School.

The Class of 2022 had 94 seniors who were recognized at the ceremony, which was led by Career Center director Traci Wildeson.

Sixteen students were recognized for achieving an advanced score on the NOCTI exam and 37 students earned a competent score. These students will receive a PA Skills certificate.

NOCTI is a performance assessment and is made up of a written test and hands-on test components. The NOCTI assessment allows students to demonstrate their acquired skills by completing jobs using the tools, materials, machines and equipment required in their program or occupation.

Additional recognition was given to students who were named to the National Technical Honor Society, those who competed in SkillsUSA events and HOSA competitions. Kaylee LaVan (Keystone) from allied health science achieved second place in nursing assisting at the state level HOSA conference and will be competing at the International HOSA Leadership Conference in Nashville in June.

Top seniors of each program were selected by their instructors. They were awarded $200 and other prizes. The top seniors were:

  • Kaylee LaVan — Allied Health (Keystone)
  • Jacob Zacherl — Automotive (Keystone)
  • Bradyn Hepburn — Computer Networking (Clarion Area)
  • Douglas Huffman — Construction (Union)
  • Lily Parrish — Cosmetology (North Clarion)
  • Abigale Downs — Culinary Arts (Redbank Valley)
  • Andrew Trenn — Diesel (Clarion-Limestone)
  • Summer Redmond — Police Science (A-C Valley)
  • Gavin Sanders — Welding (A-C Valley)

Chris Rhoades, secretary/treasurer of Zacherl Motors, was in attendance and announced the recipient of the $300 Michael and Marie Zacherl Outstanding Diesel Technology Student award was Andrew Trenn (Clarion-Limestone).

Tom Spence from the Clarion Rotary Club was on hand to present the Thomas B. Burkhardt Rotary Scholarship Award of $1,000 to Mackenna Davis (Union) in the allied health science program. She participated in the cooperative education program by working at Clarview Nursing & Rehabilitation.

Burkhardt was an instructor at the Career Center as well as a Rotary member at the time of his death. This scholarship is presented annually to the graduating cooperative education senior who best displays exemplary achievement on the job site.

An additional Rotary District 7280 Outstanding Vocational Student award of $300 was also presented by Rick Tote, Rotary district governor, to Cruz Conner in automotive technology (Redbank Valley).

Jim Hartle and Kathy Smerkar presented the Mary Kay Hartle Most Outstanding Student award of $500 to Mackenna Davis (Union) in allied health science. The award is presented in memory of Mary Kay Hartle, who was a health assistant instructor from 1976-1990.

Paul Bell, regional vice president of the Pennsylvania Builders Association and local executive officer, presented construction technology student Steven Harriett (Keystone) with a $250 PBA Outstanding Student award and a Milwaukee Power drill.

The Odd Fellows Home of Western PA provided citizenship scholarships. A continuing education scholarship of $700 was presented to Dylan Anthony (police science/Clarion-Limestone). Anthony also was awarded the board of directors continuing education award in the amount of $1,000.

A School-to-Work scholarship of $600 was awarded to Sean Minnick (welding & fabrication/Keystone).

Culinary arts student Abigale Downs (Redbank Valley), who plans to attend Westmoreland Community College in the fall, received a $2,000 scholarship from the PA Restaurant Association. This scholarship is awarded to a student who is furthering their education in the hospitality industry.

The following students were recognized for their plans to enter the military after graduation: Logan Terwint — Air Force; Brandon Fuqua — Army; and Zackery Hawk — Marines.