News Release

For Immediate Release

Contact: Daniel Wackershauser, Marketing Specialist
Phone: 608.822.2303
Mail: 1800 Bronson Blvd., Fennimore, WI 53809
Date of Release: March 9, 2020

Culinary students prepping for SkillsUSA competition

Fennimore -

Select students in the culinary programs at Southwest Wisconsin Technical College are preparing to show off their skills at a “‘Chopped’-type” competition. The SkillsUSA Post-Secondary State Culinary Competition will be held Thursday, March 19 at 2 p.m. in the Southwest Tech Culinary Kitchen Lab. Students who will be competing include, Jakob Anderson, Prairie du Chien; Lindsay Edwards, Richland Center; Melissa Arevalo, Fennimore; Jamie High, Platteville and Christina Hill, Boscobel, all students at Southwest Tech. “We are thrilled to be able to prepare our students for this competition,” said Karen Bast, who along with Jeff Dombeck, lead the culinary arts and culinary management programs at Southwest Tech.

“Our students will have the opportunity to perform in a tense, stressful situation and will be judged on a variety of skills,” said Dombeck.

The culinary students are invited to attend the actual conference, which will be held April 28-29 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin. “There are a wide range of programs that we celebrate,” said Tom Wozniak, Skills USA Wisconsin Post-Secondary state director. “We try to get all of the students at our technical colleges to participate and be part of SkillsUSA, become members of SkillsUSA, and get involved with the leadership training and the different conferences that we have.”

According to Wozniak, this is the first time in a number of years that the culinary competition is being hosted. The winner will be eligible to compete at the national conference in Louisville, Kentucky in June. “I’m excited,” he said.

With high schools eliminating technical education, organizations like SkillsUSA are important to this generation of students, noted Wozniak. “SkillsUSA celebrates these kids,” he said. “It celebrates the skilled industry. These are the ones who are going to be your lead chefs, your service managers or lead foremans. They are going to be building from the ground up.”

To learn more about the Southwest Tech culinary programs, visit

| Southwest Wisconsin Technical College is one of 16 institutions that comprise the Wisconsin Technical College System. Southwest Tech offers more than 60 programs in a wide variety of disciplines. Courses are offered on campus, online and in a blended format. The college provides apprenticeship, certificate, technical diploma, and associate degree programs that respond to district workforce needs and prepare student for family-sustaining jobs and career advancement. |

Posted in Culinary, Southwest Tech Spotlight