Group of students and instructors standing in a line together

Blue Ridge Automotive Students Bring Home Three SkillsUSA Awards

Blue Ridge Community College Automotive students pose alongside faculty and staff at the SkillsUSA North Carolina State Conference in Greensboro. This was the first time attending the conference for the three students who won medals in competition. (Photo courtesy of Joe Shook, Blue Ridge Community College.) 

Three automotive students from Blue Ridge Community College placed third, fourth, and fifth in Automotive Service Technology events at their first ever SkillsUSA state competition April 27 – 29.

The SkillsUSA North Carolina State Conference in Greensboro featured 120 events and drew about 1,500 high school and college students from across the state, including nine from Blue Ridge.

Blue Ridge’s award-winners were all Automotive Service Technology students, and included: Riley Taylor, Third Place, Postsecondary; Jacob Gazaway, Fourth Place, Postsecondary; and Isaac Renegar, Fifth Place, Secondary.

Blue Ridge Automotive instructor Brian Johnson expressed his pride in the students’ success.

“This was their first competition, so it was a great learning experience for them. I’d like to thank our faculty and staff, including Laura Simmons, Amy Singletary, Eric Stephens, Chris Peavy, Joe Shook, and Adam Riddle, for their hard work with these students,” he said.

Johnson also thanked the Great Smoky Mountains Region chapter of the Antique Automobile Club of America, whose members strongly support SkillsUSA students.

In the event’s press release, SkillsUSA North Carolina Director Paul Heidepriem said this year’s competitors will soon lead the way in their respective fields.

“These students are demonstrating more than just their skills; they are proving that our workforce is prepared to lead the way in every technical area our country needs to maintain a strong global economic presence,” he said.

For more information about SkillsUSA, visit Learn more about Blue Ridge’s Transportation and Automotive programs.