July 11, 2022


Holland, MI-Careerline Tech Center Diesel/Heavy Equipment Mechanics program student and recent Coopersville High School graduate Caleb Bouchard won the gold medal in the Diesel Equipment Technology competition at the 2022 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference on June 20 – 24 in Atlanta, GA.  

Caleb and mom Caleb and wiersma Caleb Testing at Electrical Station

In March, Bouchard won the State of Michigan SkillsUSA Diesel Equipment Technology competition to qualify for the National competition. He continued to meet his Tech Center instructors during the summer to prepare for the competition. 

“We are very proud of Caleb’s performance in the SkillsUSA competitions and throughout his entire Tech experience,” Jason Alberda, Diesel/Heavy Equipment Mechanics instructor for CTC, said. “Caleb and his classmates were all hardworking students that exemplified teamwork. They are all a pleasure to teach!”

The SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference is the largest skill competition in the world with 5,200 students competing. Nearly 40 of the best diesel students from around the country competed at 13 various stations. During the competition, students demonstrated technical skills and knowledge in various areas, including engines, drivetrain components, braking systems, electrical and more. Students are also evaluated in a mock employment interview.

Kevin Wiersma, Diesel/Heavy Equipment Mechanics Instructor for Careerline Tech Center, said it was an exciting competition. “Caleb worked diligently to earn this gold medal and he is very deserving,” Wiersma said. “I was honored to support and assist Caleb. His win is a moment I’ll never forget. Watching students work so hard and achieve their goals is one of the reasons I continue to teach after over 30 years.”

About SkillsUSA 

SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of education and industry founded in 1965 to strengthen the nation’s skilled workforce. Driven by employer demand, SkillsUSA helps students develop necessary personal and workplace skills along with technical skills grounded in academics. This SkillsUSA Framework empowers every student to succeed at work and in life, while helping to close the skills gap in which millions of positions go unfilled. Through SkillsUSA’s championships program and curricula, employers have ensured schools are teaching relevant technical skills, and with SkillsUSA’s new credentialing process, they can now assess how ready potential employees are for the job. For more information:

About Careerline Tech Center

Operated by Ottawa Area ISD, Careerline Tech Center prepares high school juniors and seniors for tomorrow's workforce by providing career and technical education in more than 25 career areas. CTC serves students from public and private high schools, as well as those who are homeschooled, within the following local school districts: Allendale, Coopersville, Grand Haven, Hamilton, Holland, Hudsonville, Jenison, Saugatuck, Spring Lake, West Ottawa, and Zeeland.

For more information, contact Michelle Ready, OAISD Director of Communications and Marketing at or 616-738-8940, ext. 4093.