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CLC student wins bronze medal at SkillsUSA national competition

by Public Relations and Marketing | Published Jul 17, 2017

David Garcia, a College of Lake County student majoring in automotive collision repair, won a bronze medal in collision repair technology at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, held June 19-23 in Louisville, Ky.

Garcia competed against 29 other students in five segments: structural repair, steel and aluminum welding, plastic repair, dent repair and damage analysis. “It was exciting to compete against such talented people,” said Garcia. “I entered the competition to have a better idea of how my skills compared to others in the field, and it was great to see that all of my hard work and preparation paid off. I used all of my schooling from CLC and past work experience.” Pictured below: faculty members Octavio Cavazos (left) and Jeff Hines (right) with bronze medalist David Garcia (center).

Skills USA 2017 CLC winner with facultyOctavio Cavazos, chair of CLC’s automotive collision repair department, said, “David did an outstanding job and represented himself and CLC extremely well. He went up against the best across the United States, and his cognitive theory and hands-on skills were put to the test. We are very proud of his accomplishments.”

Garcia, a 1997 graduate of Mundelein High School, is an auto body technician in Grayslake. He plans to earn an A.A.S. in automotive collision repair from CLC in 2018, then earn at least a bachelor’s degree in education and eventually teach automotive collision repair. “I have realized more than ever that there is a great need for students and professionals in this line of work,” he said.

Garcia entered the national competition after winning a gold medal in collision repair at the SkillsUSA Illinois State Conference April 27-29 in Springfield. He was one of seven CLC automotive collision repair students who competed at the state level. For more information on the college’s automotive collision repair program, visit www.clcillinois.edu/programs/acr.