From baking to welding, local high students put skills to the test during Nicolet College’s High School Competition Day
Inside the culinary kitchen at Nicolet College students paired off in groups of twos and threes work quickly whipping frosting and piping it onto cupcakes.
The students from 13 different local high schools had two hours Friday morning to make their cupcake creations as part of the Cupcake Challenge part of the High School Competition Day.
Downstairs in the same campus building was a slightly less stressful but no less important competition for early childhood education.
In the Interactive Reading to Children competition, students had to pick a book, make puppets to go along with, and enthusiastically read it to their fellow high school students pretending to be toddlers.
“I love kids and I want to be a teacher after high school so I thought this would be really fun,” said Abbey Kallierud. She’s a Tomahawk High School student and one of the students in the Interactive Reading challenge.
That attitude is something Diana Rickert would love to hear more of. She’s an early childhood instructor at Nicolet.
“[To] get a level of excitement and see that has just been really inspiring to us. It’s been really refreshing to see and just the excitement and the desire to go into the field of education that many of them mentioned also makes us very hopeful for our world because that’s an area where there’s a lack of people going into education nowadays,” said Rickert.
Perhaps what pleasantly surprised the instructors the most was how, even with it being a competition, the students were interacting and helping each other out.
Each of the four students WXPR spoke with said their favorite part was the people they were meeting.
“Getting to know everybody and people who are like me who want to be a teacher or like reading to children,” said Kallierud.
If that’s the only thing the students take away from this day, Lakeland Union High School family consumer science teacher Stephanie Hartzheim will call it a win.
“I’ve just been shocked to see all of these students come out of their shells and meet new people. They didn’t know anyone down here. So to be able to communicate, work with other people, be able to speak in front of others is really a great skill for them to have and really helpful for them,” she said.
More than 200 students participated in the different events.