SVCTE Students Win 10 Medals at SkillsUSA State Competition

May 14, 2019 by MetroED Archive 0 comments

Pictured left to right: Gold medalists Justin May, Maria Cortez,Isabella Gentile and Stefanie Garcia.

San Jose, CA: Silicon Valley Career Technical Education (SVCTE) students won four gold medals, four silver medals, and two bronze medals during the SkillsUSA California 52nd Annual State Leadership and Skill Conference. SVCTE sent twenty-one students to the state competition on April 25-28 in Ontario, CA. SkillsUSA state gold medalists are eligible to participate in the 55th Annual National Leadership and Skills Conference on June 24-28 in Louisville, Kentucky.

“I was the only girl competing against eight guys,” said Areli Zatarain, an SVCTE student from James Lick High School who competed in Collision Repair Technology. “Before I joined this class, I knew nothing about cars.” Areli was a gold medalist in both the SkillsUSA Regional Leadership and Skills Competition and recent State Leadership and Skill Conference.

Stefanie Garcia, a Job Corps student, credits teacher Michelle Sugden for her preparation and success. “A gold medal wouldn’t have been possible without her support. I was really well-prepared for the phases of competition, including mounting x-rays, reviewing patient history and preparing anesthetic syringes, explaining instruments, and interviewing.”

Gold medalist Isabella Gentile, a dental assisting junior from Evergreen Valley High School in the East Side Union High School District, was beyond excited with her award. “Going in, I didn’t know what to expect, but it was so memorable how the entire experience got us to bond with our fellow competitors. By the end of the week, we were working to support each other and improve on our own skills. To get ready for nationals, I am much more focused and have many more skills to learn.”

“We had a great group of Silicon Valley students representing us this year. Each day included focused activities, from motivation to competition protocols to interviewing for jobs and skill demonstrations. This year’s students were so professional,” said Gina Fleming, an SVCTE Dental Assisting instructor and SkillsUSA Advisor. “Students always have an amazing experience, learning more about leadership in their skill area and strengthening their communication skills.

We put a lot of time and effort into the students and the students give it back since it is the career they have chosen.”

The students that placed at the SkillsUSA state competition include:

Gold (eligible for Nationals)

  • Maria Cortez: Collision Repair, Andrew Hill High School (East Side Union High School District)
  • Stefanie Garcia: Dental Assisting, Job Corp
  • Isabella Gentile: Dental Assisting, Evergreen Valley High School (East Side Union High School District)
  • Justin May: Auto Body Refinishing, Adult School



  • Georgianna Gutierrez: Medical Assisting, Job Corp
  • Alan Lin: Dental Assisting, Independence High School (East Side Union High School District)
  • Bradley Smedley: Electrical, Leland High School (San Jose Unified School District)
  • Harrison St. John: Welding, Leigh High School (Campbell Union High School District





  • Brianda Covarrubias: Dental Assisting, Oak Grove High School (East Side Union High School District)
  • Keaton Vierhus: Electrical, Liberty High School (San Jose Unified School District)



To support SkillsUSA, SVCTE hosts the 14th Annual Custom and Classic Car Show on Friday, May 3. Classic car clubs, collectors, and enthusiasts are invited to attend the event from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m. Spectator admission to the car show is free, with limited parking. Exhibitor passes are a $20 tax-deductible donation/fee per car, truck, motorcycle or bicycle in the SVCTE auto show. Pre-registration is not available. Exhibitors will pay at the gate on the night of the event. The event is held at the SVCTE campus located at 760 Hillsdale Avenue, San Jose, CA 95136.

The annual SkillsUSA Championships take place this June 24-28 in Louisville, Kentucky. An expected 7,000 competitors will be tested in more than 100 leadership and hands-on occupational skills contests, the majority of which are STEM-focused. Events are as diverse as Humanoid Robotics, Automated Manufacturing Technology, Carpentry, Graphic Communications, Mobile Electronics Installation, Information Technology Services and Medical Assisting. Competitions are planned and run by industry to its standards for entry-level workers.

About Metropolitan Education District: MetroED provides Career Technical Education and academic programs to over 2,600 high school and adult students in Santa Clara County. From its campus located centrally in San Jose, California, the district operates Silicon Valley Career Technical Education and Silicon Valley Adult Education. Register for a free campus tour or get more information at:

MetroED Archive

Our archives feature accomplishments and accolades for our academic and Career Technical Education programs. We also feature school district announcements.