Auto Tech Students to Participate in PAA Competition

2-28-17 PAA Competition post-competitionEvery year at the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum in Hershey, the PA Automotive Association holds its automotive technology competition. This year, ten Pennsylvania schools will be competing for scholarships and the chance to participate in the national competition at the International Auto Show in New York.

Two of Jared Comeau’s students in CPAVTS’s Automotive Technology program have qualified for this year’s competition (qualification is determined by a written exam and a team of two students was selected from each of the 10 top schools, out of a total pool of 35 schools who attempted the exam). They are both accomplished students, Ben from Red Land High School (who also has a cooperative education assignment with a local company) and Marshall from West Perry High School. Supplementing their experiences, they have also been practicing with employees at Faulkner Subaru in Mechanicsburg.

“The other day, we went to Subaru to experience their tools and procedures,” said Ben. “The competition car is a 2016 Forrester, so they ‘bugged’ a similar vehicle so that we could practice.”

During the competition, participants will be asked to perform advanced diagnostic work on various vehicle defects in an event designed to truly test the limits of the competitors knowledge of the automotive technology field. At the end of it all, winning students will receive a chance to participate at the national-level competition as well as scholarships not just for themselves, but for their entire school.

“We’re excited to represent our school and state—maybe even make nationals,” said Marshall, who added, smiling, “Mr. Comeau says we have the best chance for first place, and Ben is on co-op so I think we have a pretty good shot!”

The PAA Technology Competition will be held on Thursday, March 9, 2017 at the AACA Museum in Hershey. The event kicks off at 10:00 a.m. and is open to anyone interested in watching the competition!

**Post Competition Update: Ben and Marshall earned second place in the competition, earning each of them a $1,000 scholarship, along with a variety of tools and automotive-themed apparel. Congratulations to both students for their outstanding performance!**




The 2017 Home Show Projects are Underway!

2-16-17 Builders Show CarpentryThe PA Home Show has been an annual tradition at CPAVTS for many years, and has been a valuable collaborative process enjoyed by students in the Carpentry, Masonry, Horticulture, Electrical Construction and Maintenance, HVAC, and Welding programs. Hundreds of people flock to the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg to showcase their products, and students from each of these programs are present setting up for their own display.

This year marks Carpentry instructor Justin Anderson’s seventh year participating in the show, and it marks Masonry instructor Scott Weber’s inaugural year.

“I’m glad students are still participating in the show,” said Mr. Weber. “When I was a student in 1989 we did work for the show and it was great exposure—my students now are enjoying what they’re building and it’s a great collaborative experience with Carpentry and other programs.”

Carpentry students produce the structures themselves with Masonry providing the stonework (including a fireplace to accompany one of the buildings); Horticulture constructing the pavers and providing landscaping; Electrical Construction and Maintenance completing electrical wiring; HVAC installing necessary plumbing work; and Welding fabricating a metal bench and fire pit.

 “I’ve participated in the show for all three years I’ve been here,” said Jake, a senior from South Middleton School District. “It helps us learn how projects are completed in the workplace—there are deadlines [for the show] that we need to follow, and we have to show up early and stay up late.”

This year, the structures being presented at the show include a 12-foot-by-24-foot shed with two garage doors (a portable garage, if you will); a 12-foot-by-12-foot shed which will be entered into the annual competition held amongst all local career and technical schools; and two “relaxation sheds”, one enclosed and one open—both connected by a pergola.

“[The students] need the exposure,” said Mr. Weber, “especially in the Masonry program. Masonry is the oldest craft in existence, and it’s a hard job that not everyone wants to do, but the demand is only increasing with time. It’s a great opportunity for all of our students [working on the project] to show the public what they can do.”

This year’s show will be held from March 16-19—just about three weeks away!—and the students in all of these programs will be hard at work making sure everything is ready. Over just a couple of days, these students will spend early mornings and long nights setting up their project in the Farm Show Complex for hundreds to see alongside the other exhibitions.




Cooperative Education Spotlight- Chance Rayhart


Coop Spotlight February 2017

Chance Rayhart, a senior from Big Spring High School, starts his work day before most of his classmates are even out of bed.  Every day he is awake by 5:30 and putting his skillset to good use by 6:30.  He is currently enrolled in the Electrical Construction Maintenance program here at Cumberland Perry AVTS and employed by BBEC, Inc.  After 2 years of classroom training, simulated work experience, and hands on projects in the ECM shop at CPAVTS, his instructor recommended him for an open Cooperative Education position with BBEC.  The transition from the classroom to the workforce was a smooth one thanks greatly to the live projects he assisted with throughout the building.  Roughing in walls and ceilings, cutting and bending pipe, bending conduit, and pulling wires are all tasks he performs on a daily bases with his entry level position.  When asked what he likes about his job, he stated he loves the uniqueness of every job site, the people he works with, and the actual ‘hands on’ part of the job.  Chance made a decision as a 9th grader to attend CPAVTS and encouraged by his dad to ‘check out’ ECM.  From there, he has excelled in all aspects of the trade and will soon be employed full time.

Catching Up With...Caitlin Thumma, Class of '13

Caitlin Thumma, Class of 2013, Cedar Cliff High School, Cosmetology

Caitlin Thumma is a 2013 graduate of Cedar Cliff High School and CPAVTS's Cosmetology Program. Caitlin came in as a guest speaker recently and discussed finance and enterpreneurship with current Cosmetology students at CPAVTS. She graciously took some time to answer our questions about what she has done with her area of study since leaving Votech.Alumni Spotlight February 2017

Here is what she had to say:


Describe the company or industry in which you currently work.

"I am currently a Salon Owner of Shear Crossings."- Caitlin Thumma


What other employment have you had related to your program areas at CPAVTS?

"I do hair at a local funeral home."- Caitlin Thumma

What additional education and training did you receive after leaving CPAVTS? Where did you receive it and did you feel CPAVTS prepared you?

"Very prepared, but always learning new things. I have attended hair shows, Webinars and classes of all kinds in the field of Cosmetology."- Caitlin Thumma

How was Cumberland Perry different than your regular high school?

"It was one of the greatest experiences I could have asked for and it taught me much more specific information, regarding my industry. It was amazing."- Caitlin Thumma

How was your industry changed since your time at Cumberland Perry? (technology, equipment, etc.)

"Cosmetology is constantly changing and you always need to be educated and up to date on new practices and techniques."- Caitlin Thumma


What is your favorite CPAVTS Memory?

"Winning second place at Skills USA. Getting my license the April before I graduated from CPAVTS."- Caitlin Thumma

Rotary Student of the Month- February 2017

SOM February 2017 change

Corissa Criley is a Susquenita High School student, in the Nursing Program. She plays Softball at Susquenita and also is on Student Council. She is a member of Susquenita's Leo Club. She is a member of Health Students of America (HOSA) at CPAVTS, and serves as her chapter Secretary. She is also a member of CPAVTS's National Technical Honor Society (NTHS), and serves as her chapter President. She is an honor roll student (CPAVTS) and student of the quarter (CPAVTS). She is currently employed with Giant Food Stores. She plans to follow her career at CPAVTS by attending Harrisburg Area Community College, to pursue her RN in Nursing.