BRCOT Health students take State gold in First SkillsUSA Challenge

Skills Gold WinnersFour students from the Biddeford Regional Center of Technology (BRCOT) placed first in the State SkillsUSA Competition for Health Knowledge Bowl on March 1. Abigail Morrill, Erica Verville, and Samantha Morse of Thornton Academy and Ashlin Ruel of Biddeford High School made up the winning team, beating out 11 other schools.

This was the first year that BRCOT participated in the annual technical standards competition for students who are preparing for careers in trade, technical and skilled service occupations, including health occupations.

“The competitions could be considered equivalent to the State Math Meet for the Career and Technical Education community and we were delighted to have 11 students participating for the first time. To compete was an achievement, to take home the Gold Medal in the Health Knowledge Bowl is a testament to the caliber of students and instruction in our Medical and Health Assisting programs,” said Paulette Bonneau, BRCOT Director.

The 11 students represented six BRCOT programs: Automotive Technology, Health and Medical Science, Precision Machining, Electrical Construction and Welding.  They competed as teams or as individuals in eight events with the Health team bringing home a gold medal.

The Health Knowledge bowl team was comprised of three students enrolled in the Introduction to Medical Sciences program and one student in the Health Assisting/Certified Nursing Assistant program at BRCOT. All four students took Medical Assisting as juniors.

“After two years of medical classes, a lot of it was just easy to remember,” said senior Erica Verville.

With their first-place finish, the students have qualified to compete in the 54th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference in Louisville, Kentucky June 25-29.  The team needs to raise $8,000 to travel to Kentucky and will be organizing fundraising events to cover the cost of the trip.

“All of the students really stepped up and got out of their comfort zones. They did a remarkable job representing our school, beating out 11 other teams, and we’re optimistic that these young women will be well-supported by our local community,” said Deb Hapgood, Health Assistant/CNA BRCOT instructor.

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