Students from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s Graphic Arts program recently submitted eight projects showcasing their skills acquired in the classroom to the 2013 Michigan Industrial and Technology Education Society (MITES) State Convention and Student Competition, held at Central Michigan University.
With a mission to encourage and recognize fine craftsmanship in the field of industrial technology and career technical education, the annual MITES student competition allows kids of all grade levels to compete against their peers from other states and Canada in a variety of divisions, including graphic arts, architectural drawing, machine shop, wrought metal, and more.
“MITES is a wonderful organization to be a part of that supports both teachers and students in the areas of industrial and career and technical education,” said Andrea Boettner, instructor for the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s graphic arts program and MITES member since 2005. “I believe in the power of hands-on, relevant, and real-world learning. This organization gives my students a place to shine and show off their skills.”
In order to qualify for the state competition, projects needed to place fourth or better at the previously held MITES Regional Student Competition.
The local high school juniors and seniors from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center who entered at least one project to the 2013 MITES State Student Competition included Erik Canute of Farwell, Tabatha Chambers of Clare, Steven Clink of Farwell, Dallas Howell of Farwell, Richard June of Clare, Julie Lester of Gladwin, Lacey Martinez of Farwell, Jacob Schlaack of Beaverton, and Samantha Tomaski of Clare.
Of the eight projects submitted, four placed at the state level. For their individual projects, Martinez placed third, Clink placed sixth, and Canute placed fourth. A group project submitted by Schlaack, Clink, and June finished sixth.
“I was very excited to see the results of the state competition,” said Boettner. “This was my first year as an instructor competing. My goal was to have at least one student place at states. Finding out that three students and one group project placed was a dream come true.”
In addition to the student project competition, the MITES convention featured a Pen Turning for Troops event. Using a lathe, the kids created 50 wooden pens that would be sent to the country’s service men and women overseas. The participants were then entered into a drawing to win a $500 mini-lathe donated by Barn Door Lumber in Hemlock.
Farwell’s Steven Clink was the winner of the equipment. With some past woodshop experience, Clink said he was looking forward to making, “a lot of really cool projects with the lathe. I can make pens, fix my mom’s dining room chair, and maybe make a wooden bowl!”
Boettner said Barn Door Lumber is a faithful contributor to MITES and supporter of industrial education. “Barn Door Lumber’s generous gift provides the financial and moral support needed for MITES to continue their mission,” she said. “There is no way to fully express our gratitude for their loyalty.”
Graphic Arts is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to high school juniors and seniors at the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of the Clare-Gladwin RESD. The students spend half of their day at their CTE program and the other half at their local high school.