Local student’s abilities in machining allows for another competition win

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Devin Paquette, who already won gold at the “Get Skilled” competition at St. Clair College in March, has added another award to his resumé.

Paquette, a Grade 12 OYAP student at General Amherst High School, won the precision machining competition that was held as part of the Skills Ontario event in Toronto. Given two projects to complete in three hours each, Paquette’s came the closest to perfection among the competitors from around the province. The tolerance on a cylinder and a cube was 5/1,000s of an inch, with score deductions for every 1,000th outside the specifications.

During the morning, he worked on a lathe while the afternoon saw him work on a milling machine.

The win sees Paquette advance to the National Skills Championship in Edmonton as part of Team Ontario.

“I’m pretty excited to move on,” said Paquette. “I knew I was doing well at the (Skills Ontario) competition. I knew there were a few mistakes, but I knew I was doing OK.”

Devin Paquette, a Grade 12 student at General Amherst High School, won the precision metal competition in Toronto. (Special to the RTT)

Rodney Levesque, Paquette’s teacher at General Amherst, said the students were given a blueprint of what they had to make from a raw piece of material.

“I had three hours with each machine,” said Paquette.

Levesque said the Skills Ontario competition wasn’t just for machining, but a wide range of disciplines including carpentry, video production, hair styling, and much more. Amherst students Aiden Bradwell and Ethan Lavigne also participated at Skills Ontario in video production.

“Through the OYAP program, Devi has had a placement at Centreline,” said Levesque. “It’s a great program for students looking to get into the trades.”

Paquette is also part of the Specialty High Skills Major program (SHSM).

“It’s going to be a fun trip,” Paquette said of the upcoming trip to Edmonton. “I’m looking forward to spending time with Team Ontario.”

Levesque said more students are needed to go into the trades, as he said there is a large market for people.

“The demand is greater than the number of students that I have to give them,” he said.

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