RDHS students medal at SKLZ competition

Par Raymond Berthiaume
RDHS students medal at SKLZ competition

Ashley Feenstra and Twyla Lalonde, both in grade 11, were selected to represent RDHS at the annual skilled trades competition pitting 250 high school students against each other at the St. Lawrence College Cornwall Campus. The competition gives each category a directive or set of plans at the competition and the students are given a set amount of time to complete the project.

“They are some of the best and brightest I have in my class,” said Rob Porteous, the girls’ shop teacher. “They can read plans and have an eye for detail. I knew they would be good candidates.

And the girls didn’t disappoint.

Lalonde, competing in the cabinetry category, was looking forward to finding a spot on the podium after not placing in last year’s events, so taking home the bronze was exciting.

“I wasn’t expecting to place, but I definitely wanted to,” said Lalonde.

Feenstra who placed second in the individual carpentry category was fairly confident she could pull off a win.

“Whether it was like third, second or first, I just wanted to place.”

RDHS principal Stacey McCready said the school’s big push is “real world learning,” and the technology courses and the success of the students at the SKLZ competition are a demonstration of that.

“To go this competition and place, it’s very exciting,” said McCready. “I’m incredibly proud.”

“I wasn’t surprised at all,” said Porteous. “I knew they would represent our school well.”

Though Feenstra and Lalonde aren’t sold on a career in carpentry both are continuing to pursue the trades in their senior year, largely thanks to Mr. Porteous.

“I never really pictured myself doing anything revolving around carpentry,” said Lalonde. “But taking his class really opened up options for me.”

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