Two SUN Area Technical Institute students took top honors at the 55th annual SkillsUSA National Conference and Championships, held in Louisville, Kentucky June 24 –June 28.

More than 6000 outstanding career and technical education students joined in the excitement of hands-on competition in one hundred different trade, technical and leadership fields, working against the clock, and each other, proving their expertise in their field of study as well as in their ability to communicate professionally in the work place.

National contests are designed, planned and run by representatives of labor and management alike to recognize the achievements of career and technical education students and to encourage them to strive for excellence and pride in their chosen professions. To be eligible to compete at the National Conference contestants must have taken first place honors at their state level.

Receiving first place, national gold medal honors was, McKenna Duitch in prepared speaking.  Duitch won her gold medal competing against forty other contestants from across the country addressing the topic of Career Readiness. Duitch won a full scholarship to Sullivan University in Louisville, a Kindle Fire and cash gift cards. Duitch is a 2019 graduate of the SUN Tech welding program and a 2019 graduate of Selinsgrove High School.

Receiving 2nd place honors was Heidi Beiler who won her silver medal in the area of esthetics. The esthetic contest requires contestants to take a written exam, complete an oral presentation, perform a facial treatment with massage, complete a beauty makeup design, and a fantasy makeup design on a theme declared by the National Esthetics Technical Committee. Ms. Beiler was assisted in her second -place win by fellow classmate Karli Hackenberg who served as her model. Both our graduates of the SUN Tech Cosmetology Program and Mifflinburg Area High School.

Beiler, received her second-place honors competing against twenty-seven other state champions from across the United States, and won several hundred dollars’ worth of trade related tools and equipment.

Also competing for SUN Tech and receiving National Finalist placement were cosmetology student and Shikellamy High School graduate, Kashmir Samuel and her model Tonya Hudler in the area of Nail Care where she placed 5th among twenty- nine contestants; and David Long a 2019 graduate of SUN Tech’s electrical program and Selinsgrove High School, who placed sixth among twenty- four contestants in Industrial Motor Control.