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Mining companies, GBC donate to SkillsUSA Team

First row from left: SkillsUSA Adviser Norm Whittaker, Jessica Toland, Zachariah Burgess, Electrical Instructor Clint Kelly. Second Row: Jose Landeros, Ethan Lehman. Third row: Ryan Saladino, Bernard Addenbrooke. Fourth row: Kurtis Petersen, Alonzo Vasquez. Fifth row: Bryce Powell, Marcus Velasquez. Sixth row: Adrian Mendez and Spencer Hatch. Top: SkillsUSA Adviser Dave Douglas.

Courtesy of Great Basin College

ELKO — With support from Barrick Mining Corp., the CTE Department received three portable power centers for use as training tools for Great Basin College students. In part, this donation allowed for two old transformers, originally donated to the GBC Electrical program by Barrick, to be recycled.

Millwright and Electrical students worked together to salvage usable parts and scrap copper from two of the units to use in completely rebuilding one remaining unit for future training use.

The Great Basin College SkillsUSA team received a check for $1,200 from Pacific Steel for copper removed from the two transformers.

Electrical Instructor Clint Kelly explained the old transformers weighed in excess of a ton a piece, which required considerable time and a lot of ingenuity on behalf of both groups to remove them from their metal shells.

“The job was done safely and efficiently with a great deal of teamwork,” said Kelly. “When Pacific Steel learned the donation was going towards the SkillsUSA Team, they increased their price from 90 cents per pound to a $1.40 per pound to help with the students’ expenses.”

GBC Instructor and SkillsUSA Adviser Norm Whittaker said the team will use the money for the state competition held in Reno, April 12 – 15 and the national competition held in Louisville, Kentucky, June 20 – 25 of next year.

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“On behalf of the GBC SkillsUSA Club, I would like to thank Barrick Corp. for donating the equipment to Great Basin College, the Electrical Department for donating the extra equipment to the SkillsUSA Club, and Pacific Steel for giving us a premium price for the equipment,” said Whittaker.

The GBC team is made up of students who are studying programs at the college including welding, diesel, electrical systems, millwright, instrumentation and early childhood development. SkillsUSA is an organization that not only prepares students for careers in technical and skilled service occupations, but allow students to practice what they have learned in the classroom.

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