The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

Welders place top five at state convention

Manufacturing teacher Tom Hull, along with eight MHS students, traveled to Linn-Benton Community College to compete in the 2013 Oregon State Welding Competition.

By Abby Clough | Reporter

Junior Sasha Strain and senior Neil Cox recently competed well and earned second and fourth place in their respective contests in Oregon’s 2013 state welding competition.

Eight students traveled up state with manufacturing teacher Tom Hull to compete in three different fields. The six other competitors included sophomores Carlos Bojoroquez, Hunter Myers, Derek Seevers, Elyas Stringer, Tyler Vassar and senior Jordan Edwards.

Strain entered into the Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) field of the competition. In TIG welding one uses a metal filler rod and a welding torch to strike an arc. Strain surprised herself when she won second place.

“I didn’t think I was going to place at all,” Strain said.

According to Strain, there were 200-300 student welders from all over Oregon at the competition. Of those, only about 10-15 girls competed. Strain is also in the minority in the shop at MHS, where the majority of students enrolled in the program are male, but Strain likes breaking the mold.

“They [males in the shop program] kind of underestimate you, thinking that, ‘Oh, that’s cute,’” Strain said.

Cox entered into the competition as a general welder, which requires proficiency in all of the different types of welding.

“I do general, which they just tell me I have to be good at all these certain things,” Cox said. “I have to be good at TIG, stick [shielded metal arc welding], wire feed [gas metal arc welding], cutting [a torch that heats up the metal and cuts it using oxygen] and fitting [metal], and then I show up and they just tell me what I have to do and I have to do it.”

The student participants were each given a blueprint for the field they were competing in and were expected to recreate what was on the blueprint. For Cox, the fact the competition was mostly based off of blueprints was surprising and he may have prepared himself differently with this knowledge.

“I would change my preparation time, like what I didn’t really think about was that it was a blueprint contest basically,” Cox said.

Cox adjusted and earned fourth place in state for general welding.

For many of the shop students, certain aspects of the competition came as a surprise. Vassar said the shop was very different than Marshfield’s.

“I actually expected a shop very similar to ours, you know, not very big and somewhat decent machines that were all the same, but it wasn’t like that at all,” Vassar said.

The competition was held at Linn-Benton Community College in Albany, Oregon. Since the competition included machining, welding and drafting, the college shop was equipped with newer, more advanced machines than those at MHS and the competitors had to relearn the basics of the machines. Seevers competed in the machining part of the competition and it was his first time participating in such a contest.

“I was a little nervous. I didn’t know what to expect,” Seevers said.

Performing on demand was a challenge, with many of the competitions requiring students to create their work in a two-hour time period, then turn it in and wait for the judge to score it.

Hull had high expectations for the competition.

“I expected my students to have to compete with some of the best welders and machine shop students in the state,” Hull said.

For Hull, how his students performance in the competition was not his main concern.

“I’m happy that my kids went and had a good time and conducted themselves like ladies and gentlemen,” Hull said. “That’s what I’m happy about.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Marshfield Times

Your donation will support the student journalists of Marshfield High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Marshfield Times

Comments (0)

All The Marshfield Times Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Activate Search
The Student News Site of Marshfield High School
Welders place top five at state convention