The Vantage Point
By: Vantage Career Center
Seventeen outstanding Vantage seniors were recently selected as members of the Vantage chapter of the National Technical Honor Society. They were introduced and inducted at the annual NTHS banquet on Dec. 9, held in the Commons Area. In addition to the guests of honor, parents, home school principals and counselors, and Vantage teachers and administrators attended the banquet to recognize this elite group of students.
The main purpose of the National Technical Honor Society is to reward scholastic achievement in career technical education. Membership encourages skill development, honesty, service, leadership, citizenship, and individual responsibility. In addition, students are selected for membership in NTHS as a reward for excellence in workforce education; to develop self-esteem, pride and encourage students to reach for higher levels of achievement; and to promote business and industry’s critical workplace values – honesty, responsibility, initiative, teamwork, productivity, leadership, and citizenship.
NTHS membership is the highest award for excellence in career technical education and is a reliable indicator of performance and leadership in the workplace. Students who achieved a 3.5 grade point average or better, while maintaining a 95 percent attendance rate at Vantage, were eligible to apply for membership. In addition to submitting a resume and writing an essay stating why they would like to be a part of the NTHS, the students also were required to obtain three teacher recommendations.
Students selected for membership in the National Technical Honor Society for the 2014-2015 school year are: Dmitry Billingsley (Continental), Network Systems, Jarett Bute (Antwerp), Welding, Brandi Calvelage (Van Wert), Health Technology, Jeremiah Dealey (Crestview), Industrial Mechanics, Caitlin Geckle (Continental), Cosmetology, Grant Gillett (Wayne Trace), Industrial Mechanics, Jasper Godeke (Antwerp), Building & Grounds, Nicholas Grote (Ottoville), Industrial Mechanics, Jenny Holbrooks (Wayne Trace), Cosmetology, David Leathers (Delphos St. John’s), Building & Grounds, Cheyenne Miller-Sweet (Antwerp), Cosmetology, Alysha Moran (Continental), Health Technology, Jill Ross (Wayne Trace), Medical Office Management, Derek Schroeder (Kalida), Precision Machining, Alexa Sikraji (Lincolnview), Cosmetology, Tyler Talboom (Delphos Jefferson), Auto Body, and Samantha Van Vlerah (Wayne Trace), Auto Body.
Eighth graders from area schools got to take a peek at what the future might look like in fifteen different careers, as they visited the career technical labs at Vantage just a few days ago.
Each school in the Vantage district brings their eighth graders to Vantage for a career exploration activity, which involves a two-hour demonstration tour. Eighth graders receive a brochure which describes the career technical programs and explains what a typical day is like for students who attend Vantage. The eighth graders spend a little time in each lab and return home with a better idea of what goes on in this big, new school.
This career exploration activity is especially helpful by informing the students about all the options available to them. During the visit, the eighth graders are able to see what skills are being used in different career areas. Students may also become more aware of how their interests and abilities can be developed into a rewarding career.
It is always fun hosting the eighth graders and giving them a chance to see what career technical education at Vantage Career Center is all about.
The annual Culinary Arts Thanksgiving Lunch Buffet is just around the corner. Robin Burns and her class invite the public to this popular event. It will be held two days this year ñ Wednesday, Nov. 19 and Friday, Nov. 21. Guests will be seated from 11 a.m. to noon. This year the buffet will include a delicious variety of salads, meats, vegetables, breads and desserts for just $8.95 (plus tax). Reservations are necessary. To make reservations, call 419.238.5411 ext. 2425.
A reminder to Vantage parents that Parent/Teacher conferences will be held on Monday, Nov. 24 from 4-8 p.m. and on Tuesday, Nov. 25 from 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Call 419.238.5411 ext. 2126 to schedule an appointment.
The Vantage senior Cosmetology class is proud to announce that the Avantage Salon will open on Tuesday, Oct. 21. Enjoy a morning just for you! Schedule an appointment in the salon for a haircut, manicure, or pedicure.
The salon will be open from 8:30-11 a.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. A variety of cosmetology services including hair care, skin care, manicures, pedicures, permanents, hair cutting and styling are offered. Later this year, even more specialty services will be available such as spa pedicures, gel polish, “Paraffin Dipping” for extremely dry hands, “Tea Tree Experience” deep conditioning treatment and aromatherapy. Groups are always welcome. It’s a great way to have a ladies’ morning out. Call 419.238.5411 ext. 2003 to make an appointment. Please note that if school is on a delay, cosmetology services are cancelled for the day.
In addition to serving customers, students are also taught salon management skills, retailing practices and communication skills. Students also study the specifics of anatomy and chemistry related to the hair care industry. This year’s instructors are Amy Grothouse, (a Vantage Cosmetology grad herself) teaching the junior class, and Susie Smith, the senior Cosmetology teacher.
Students completing the cosmetology course of study and meeting the required competencies have the opportunity to take the state cosmetology board exam and earn a license issued by the Ohio State Board of Cosmetology.
Even Mother Nature couldn’t keep Vantage students and staff from helping out at the 16th annual United Way Day of Caring! Sure, there were 2 and 3 hour delays for fog, and even a few school cancellations, but it all came together. Vantage is proud to have been part of such a successful day.
In a new twist this year, the Medical Office Management students and their teacher, Paula VanTilburg, directed the school’s food drive blitz challenge with Braun Industries that was held on Student Appreciation Day. Braun dropped off an ambulance and teams of Vantage students and staff competed to ìstuffî the ambulance with food items. At the same time, Braun employees were stuffing an ambulance in their parking lot too. Although Vantage won the competition, the real winner was the Salvation Army Food Pantry. Over 4,500 items were donated by Vantage and Braun in one morning! The Vantage Medical Office Management team donated the most items and won a pizza party. An additional $1,600 was raised to purchase more groceries. Vantage students and staff were able to contribute over 5,000 non-perishable food items to the Salvation Army this year.
Providing some much-needed muscle to load and unload the donated food on and off the collection trucks were students from the Vantage Building and Grounds program and their teacher, Larry Mengerink.
The Vantage Student Ambassadors, along with teacher aide Nancy Keith and American Studies teacher Tony Unverferth worked at the Salvation Army Food Drive, helping to unload, sort, count, box and store donated food items from around the county.
Reesa Rohrs and her senior Health Careers students volunteered their expertise at the bloodmobile held at Trinity Friends Church Family Life Center. Using what they learned from class and their practical experiences, they performed duties on the bloodmobile floor and in the kitchen and canteen to assist the American Red Cross to insure things went as smoothly as possible. New this year was the opportunity for Vantage seniors to donate blood during their lab time. Nearly 40 students hopped on the shuttle van and donated blood.
Although Robin Burns and the Culinary Arts class stayed at school, they participated in the day’s activities by preparing delicious chicken noodle soup (with homemade noodles) and potato soup for the Red Cross workers and the volunteers at the bloodmobile.
Community service projects provide a real opportunity for students to learn how to work well with others. Being able to give help without expecting anything back in return is an important lesson in life. Thank you to all Vantage students and staff who donated food, time, finances or blood to help make this special day a success in Van Wert County.
When students think of summer, they think of sleeping late, lazy days, and fun nights. But getting a chance for real-world experience in what you’re studying in school AND getting paid for it trumps the former.
Internships provide incredible opportunities for high school students to gain significant work experience while exploring career options. Although we mostly hear about internships for college students, one local business has started internships for high school students who have the right skills.
Two Vantage students Nick Grote (Ottoville) and MiKenzie Luginbill (Parkway) had the right skills and earned a summer internship opportunity at Kennedy Manufacturing in Van Wert.
Both young men competed with their classmates in Industrial Mechanics and Precision Machining for the two internships. That meant writing up a resume, completing an application and interview, and passing a drug test. And then Kennedy Manufacturing talked to their lab instructors and others for recommendations!
Nick worked in the Maintenance department from 6 a.m.-2:30 p.m. each weekday during the summer. He worked on presses, forklifts, and sheers. Then he tore apart motors, worked on hydraulic pumps and did troubleshooting on electrical issues, alongside full-time Kennedy employees who were his mentors.
MiKenzie worked in the Machine shop, 5 a.m.-1:30 p.m., where he ran mills, made stops for the brake press, and worked on the punch. When I asked about his unusual summer work hours, he replied, “Sometimes you have to wake up pretty early to go to work! I stayed because I wanted to work, learn more, and I needed the money.”
School started last week for these high school seniors who spent the summer working in their field and getting more experience. They agreed that it was a little hard to come back after seeing what it would be like in the real work world (and getting a paycheck)! But they both realize that their summer internship was an amazing opportunity. “I was so excited when I got this job,” Nick said. “It was such an advantage to have had a year of Industrial Mechanics class. A lot of the things I did we learned in lab. Hopefully, I can go back to Kennedy for Early Placement and, if I do a good job, get hired permanently.”
“The best part of my summer internship was knowing that I was working on a piece that was real that someone was going to use to build a part. At work, I learned some things that we haven’t covered in lab yet, so it was a little more challenging, but I loved it,” MiKenzie said.
Plant Manager Mike Pond told Vantage Career Tech supervisor Ted Verhoff ”It was a great experience for our entire plant. Both MiKenzie and Nick helped us get some of the bigger projects done ahead of time. It was also a good teaching and learning experience for our senior technicians. We’re planning on doing it every summer going forward.”
In high schools around the area (and the rest of the country too), it’s the time of the year for awards ceremonies, baccalaureates, and graduations. Vantage Career Center recently had the opportunity to congratulate 17 seniors who had perfect attendance this year. That is just about 12 percent of the senior class. More incredible is that seven of these students had perfect attendance for the entire two years they attended Vantage.
To honor these students, a Senior Perfect Attendance Luncheon was held. Superintendent Staci Kaufman spoke to the students about their outstanding accomplishment. Darrell Miller, Vantage attendance officer, congratulated the students and reminded them that employers always ask about or check on a student’s attendance even before inviting them for an interview.
Students with perfect attendance realize that school is their first and most important job. They’re learning how to show up for school on time every day, so that when they graduate and get a job, they’ll know how to show up for work on time every day. Students who attend school regularly are more likely to graduate and find good jobs. In fact, a high school graduate makes, on average, a half million dollars more than a dropout over a lifetime.
Many of these students are active in their home school activities and hold part-time jobs after school and on the weekends.
After lunch, each student was given a certificate to be included in their Career Passport that will document their perfect attendance for future employers.
Vantage seniors with perfect attendance for two years are: Shana Brincefield, Sr. Cosmetology (Lincolnview), Thad Carter, Sr. Industrial Mechanics (Van Wert), Layna Mihm, Sr. Medical Office Management (Van Wert), Austin Ricker, Sr. Precision Machining (Kalida), Alyssa Romero, Sr. Cosmetology (Antwerp), Wyatt Saam, Sr. Precision Machining (Lincolnview), and Ben Schnipke, Sr. Carpentry (Ottoville).
Seniors with perfect attendance for this school year are: Bryan Buck, Sr. Building & Grounds (Delphos Jefferson), Regan Cunningham, Sr. Cosmetology (Continental), LaShawne Granger, Sr. Cosmetology (Van Wert), Brooke Hesseling, Sr. Health Technology (Delphos Jefferson), Nathan Hooker, Sr. Network Systems (Continental), Adam Jurczyk, Sr. Auto Body (Van Wert), Clirissa McMonigal, Sr. Auto Body (Continental), Quintin Mengerink, Jr. Ag and Industrial Power Tech (Van Wert), Haley Sinning, Jr. Health Technology (Van Wert), and Jereka Spieth, Sr. Culinary Arts (Crestview).
The past few weeks have been incredibly busy for Vantage students competing in SkillsUSA and FCCLA competitions. Here are the results.
Congratulations to Carpentry seniors Austen Stukey (Parkway), who placed first in the SkillsUSA Carpentry contest and Ben Schnipke (Ottoville), who placed first in the Cabinetmaking contest at state. They advance to the National SkillsUSA contest in Kansas City this summer. A big shout out to all the other SkillsUSA contestants: Evan Prowant (Continental) who placed third in the CNC Turning contest; the team of Alex Schnipke (Ottoville) and Jacob Blair (Paulding) who competed in Mechatronics; Clirissa McMonigal (Continental) who competed in the Collision Repair Technology contest; Isaac Nichols (Ft. Jennings), a contestant in the Automotive Refinishing Technology contest; Derric Shisler (Paulding), who competed in the Electrical Construction Wiring contest; and to the team of Kyle Honigford (Kalida) and Mason Gerken (Antwerp) who competed in Robotics and Automation.
Vantage FCCLA Satellite students are headed to San Antonio, Texas, in July for their National Contest. Van Wert High School Family & Consumer Science students Kiley Wortman and Samantha Rohrbacher received Gold for their Chapter Service Project which was to make blankets and present them to veterans taking Honor Flights. Paulding High School students Kelsi Manz and Tiffany Spangler also
received Gold for their National Programs in Action event called Bookin’ It to Ethiopia. They raised money to build a library in Ethiopia. Receiving a Gold rating was the Vantage Culinary Arts Meeting Event Set-up team of David Fisher (Paulding), Derek Foy (Continental), and Zach Wilkes (Paulding) and the Vantage Early Childhood Team of Bethany Dunderman (Antwerp), Asia Flinn (Antwerp) and Andrea Longwell (Ft. Jennings). Other competitors from Paulding were Kristen Schilt in the Power of One, Jordan Shull and Kacie Karlstadt in the Focus on Children Star Event, and Bridgett Moore, Jenifer Switzer, and Michelle Young in the Chapter Service Portfolio Star Event.
Oops, we did it again! The 34th annual Vantage Bloodmobile was held on Thursday and Friday, April 10 and 11 to help the American Red Cross keep up with the urgent need for blood. The bloodmobile is a team effort with students and staff from several different programs working together to get organized and set up for a bloodmobile. The Vantage bloodmobile has grown so much in recent years that it has become a two-day event.
It takes many people to put together a successful high school blood drive. Special thanks to Mr. Larry Mengerink from Building and Grounds for unloading the Red Cross truck at 6:30 p.m. in the morning and being happy about it. The members of the junior and senior Health Technology classes set up the donor room and also served as staffers, assisting with registration, first aid, and escort duties. A very special “Thank You” to Health Tech teachers Reesa Rohrs and Leigh Carey for doing an amazing job coordinating and scheduling student and staff donations.
Vantage is one of the largest high school bloodmobiles in the region and has one of the highest numbers of first time donors. This year’s blood drive was excellent. Nearly 200 students and staff members registered to donate blood. A total of 131 pints of blood were collected over the two days. Thanks to everyone who made this year’s Vantage bloodmobile a huge success.