Sandburg students win 6 golds, 8 total medals at SkillsUSA Illinois Championships

GALESBURG —Sandburg students took home six state championships and eight medals overall at the SkillsUSA Illinois Championships from April 24-26 in Peoria.

Gavin Gerard won gold in masonry and for job interview. Joining him as state champions were Faith Kiprop (technical computer applications), Brian Kipchemis (medical math), Ascar Jepchirchir (medical terminology) and Sullivan Ross (welding sculpture). 

As winners of their respective categories, all five students qualified to compete at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference from June 24-29 in Atlanta. This is the second consecutive year Gerard and Kiprop have advanced to the national level. Gerard qualified in the job interview category last year, and Kiprop qualified in technical computer applications.

Also appearing on the medal stand for Sandburg at the state competition were Ryan Leary and Deven Bushong. Leary won silver in welding sculpture, and Bushong was the bronze medalist in that category. 

More than 2,000 students took part in the state championship event, which featured competitions in over 100 trade, technical and leadership fields.

More than 5,000 students who are expected to compete at the SkillsUSA national conference. SkillsUSA serves students at the college, high school and middle school level who are preparing for careers in trade, technical and skilled-service occupations and for further education.

Sandburg students (l-r) Faith Kiprop, Ascar Jepchirchir, Deven Bushong, Sullivan Ross, Gavin Gerard, Ryan Leary and Brian Kipchemis hold their awards from the SkillsUSA Illinois Championships on April 26 in Peoria. Gerard (masonry, job interview), Kiprop (technical computer applications), Kipchemis (medical math) Jepchirchir (medical terminology) and Ross (welding sculpture) won their respective categories to advance to the national competition next month in Atlanta.