Brandon Satterthwaite has a college scholarship, a job and an employer willing to help him pay his way to a national competition.
But it wasn't that long ago that Mick Jarrett, machine trades teacher at Huntington North High School, thought Satterthwaite wasn't destined to achieve great things. Satterthwaite, Jarrett says, wasn't a real go-getter during his first year in the program.
This year, though, it was different.
"He came in this year and said, yeah, he maybe could do a little better," Jarrett said during the HNHS vocational awards banquet on Thursday, May 23.
Satterthwaite began entering, and winning, contests that test the skills of machining students. In May, he won first place at the SkillsUSA state championships, making him eligible to compete in the national SkillsUSA championships in Kansas City, MO, June 24-29.
Along the way, Satterthwaite met Tom Allred, director of operations at PHD in Huntington. Allred was among a group of employers who volunteered to conduct mock interviews with HNHS students to prepare them for interviews in the real world.
"Brandon was one of the interviewees," Allred says. "I gave him my business card and told him to give me a call sometime."
Satterthwaite was later matched with PHD through the HNHS cooperative education program, which places students in the classroom half the day and in the workplace the other half of the day.
Satterthwaite is now part of the regular crew at PHD, running computer-controlled lathes that produce automation devices such as robotic hands and sliders. He'll continue to work at PHD through the summer, Allred says.
During the banquet, Allred presented Satterthwaite with a grant from PHD that will help pay his way to the national SkillsUSA contest.
Satterthwaite also received a $1,250 scholarship from the school's machine trades program. He plans to attend Ivy Tech Community College to study machine tool technology.
Complete caption: Brandon Satterthwaite (left), a graduating senior at Huntington North High School, will compete in the national SkillsUSA competition in Kansas City, MO, this summer, and the trip will be partially paid for by his employer, PHD. Tom Allred, director of operations at the Huntington PHD plant, presented Satterthwaite with the funding and a PHD shirt during the HNHS vocational awards banquet on Thursday, May 23.