SCTCC Automotives Instructor, Byron Byker, helped Discovery Academy students from St. Cloud win the state tournament and advance to the national tournament for the sixth consecutive year.
Discovery Academy allows high school students from Sartell, Sauk Rapids, Apollo, and St. Cloud Tech high schools to take automotive classes at Apollo High School and earn free college credits from SCTCC.
High school students from all over the state compete for the chance to go to the state tournament. The top teams from the state tournament send students to compete in the National Automotive Technology Competition, held in New York in April.
“The best of the best of all the students from all over the country compete for over $3.5 million in prizes and scholarships,” said President of the Greater New York Automotive Dealers Association, Mark Schienberg.
After winning the state tournament early in January, Byker’s Discovery Academy team will be sending one student from Sartell and one student from Apollo to compete at the national competition in New York. A past team Byker taught placed fifth in the national competition.
No matter how Byker’s students fare in the national competition, their involvement in Discovery Academy has them coming out ahead of most high school students.
“A lot of (Discovery Academy) students will take four classes, which gives them 16 free college credits before they’re done with high school,” said Byker. “Along with being a feeder for the college, it’s great to see students gain these skills at an early age and have success in the competitions.”