Every year, high school and college students across the state are invited to participate in SkillsUSA, a competitive event that tests their knowledge and their expertise in trades-related fields. During this year’s event, which took place on March 2nd in Bangor, Washington County Community College student Clint Dakin was awarded the gold medal for his aptitude in Power Equipment Technology.
Dakin was the only college-level competitor in the field of Power Equipment Technology, but that didn’t mean he was guaranteed a medal, explains WCCC Admissions Advisor Rob Gordon, who attended the event. “Judges score contestants as they preform multiple tasks and then the scores are determined to see if a medal is awarded,” Gordon said. “So even though he was the only contestant in Post-Secondary, he could have only received a Bronze, a Silver, or no medal at all.” Having received the gold medal, Dakin will be eligible to compete at the national competition in Louisville, Kentucky at the end of June.
“It was a great experience,” Dakin said. “I felt a lot better going into it this year than last year, because I learned a lot more at the college than I knew before.” Dakin, who is originally from Stockton Springs, attended a technical center in high school and competed on its behalf last year. Since he’s been enrolled at WCCC, Dakin said he has particularly gained from instructor Greg Johnson’s coverage of the electrical aspects of the field. “Greg’s gone over a lot with us, he’s been very thorough.”
For Dakin, WCCC’s program was exactly was he was looking for when he was selecting a school last year. “It’s a really nice campus with a small student body. Everyone takes the time to get to know you. And it’s the only place in New England that really offered what I wanted to learn.”
Once Dakin receives his certificate in Powersports Technology this May, he will be enrolling in the Heavy Equipment Maintenance program at the college. Upon graduating, he plans to work for established businesses before potentially starting his own.
“Clint is a self-motivated, self-starter, and an excellent student,” Johnson said. “He’s always eager to help out anyone with anything. He’ll be a great addition to any company lucky enough to hire him. Clint is what all employers in my industry are looking for: young, conscientious, hard-working and reliable.”