Skills to pay the bills

After coming close three years in a row, senior Johnny Seery has finally made the national level, for SkillsUSA.

Seery has been a participant of SkillsUSA since his freshman year. At first, he tried every shop class available but soon settled on his favorite, welding. “It’s a hobby I guess,” said Seery. “[I get satisfaction from] hands on work; getting to see a concept come to life.”

To him, it may just be a hobby, but to others, it seems like a natural talent. In SkillsUSA, there is no need to qualify for State. Anyone who pays their way has a chance to compete. Make it into the top spot and you get your shot at Nationals. He’s placed in tig welding three years; finals in my sophomore and third in welding fabrication for junior.

Following his first attempt he refused give up. He claimed the failures made him more motivated. Seery set out on a quest to prove all of his doubters wrong. “[I was supported by] family, friends; people at work helped a lot,” said Seery. “[Work has]…helped me tremendously. Everyone down there at Troyer Enterprises has taught me a lot.”

Having finally made it to Nationals, Seery said his main strategy is to study for the written portion of the competition. With a bit more practice he feels his chances are pretty good. “I have to make sure I don’t rush myself,” Seery said. “If I don’t rush myself I’ll be fine.”