High school students throughout Stanislaus County competed recently in the 33rd Annual Occupational Olympics and Career Exposition at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds. Riverbank High School senior Matthew Nisperos earned a second place win in the Ag Engineering/Construction Trades event, the best showing among the RHS participants.
There were over 600 students from Stanislaus County high schools that competed in 18 competitive events in the March 22 expo, including Agricultural Equipment Technology, Automotive Technology, Criminal Justice, Fashion Design, Firefighter Candidate Training, Floriculture, and General Marketing to name a few.
Several business and industry representatives were on hand to speak to the students about various occupations that participated in the event.
“I told him (Nisperos) that I really think that you could be successful at this,” stated RHS Building and Construction Instructor Cory Casteel. “I will coach you and I will help you and I will get you through it.”
There were four stations in the event where they had to build a planter box, complete a written test, create a material estimate, tool identification, and had to wire a switch and plug to a light.
Nisperos competed against 40 other students in his category and he was the only student from Riverbank High that participated in the Occupational Olympics.
“I am very pleased,” expressed Casteel about the second place showing for Nisperos. “I was a little bit nervous for him. Some of it is memorization and the test we go over in class. The woodworking is more critical thinking and the electrical takes practice.”
For his efforts and second place win, Nisperos received an award ribbon, a plaque, and power tools that he plans to use to build his father some shelves. He also has plans to further his education after high school.