Back to News

May 23, 2024 Middleburg High hosts inaugural Trades Signing Day

Full content here

MIDDLEBURG – Seven students from Clay County District School's Career and Technical Education program were honored on Thursday, May 16, with a formal signing ceremony at the inaugural Trades Signing Day. 

Similar to National Signing Day for collegiate sports, the students at Trades Signing Day signed letters of intent, symbolizing their commitment to entering the workforce in their chosen trade.

The participating students were Clayton Weatherford, Shane Jourdan, Austin Larson, Wade Mathis, Emily Winters, Ian Gunter and Nate Helmuth. 

Helmuth was Middleburg High's 2024 Gold Hammer Winner. It was a distinction awarded for being at the top of the school's carpentry program. One of his favorite projects was building a house.

"Kind of like in Minecraft, yeah," Helmuth said. 

He and his other carpentry students constructed the wooden frame in which students in the electrician program could practice their wiring. Helmuth said that the completed project ended up being a full-size two-story house. 

Just a few years after the CCDS School Board approved the Middleburg High CTE academy, Helmuth and the six others on the panel stood before the student body as shining examples. 

The seven students courageously took their first steps into a wide variety of soon-to-be successful careers in the workforce ahead of their graduation. Friends and family cheered for them in Middleburg High's gymnasium. Teachers and employers praised the students for their work ethic and passion for their chosen fields.

Some of the employers were Miller Electric, Clay County Utility Authority and Garber Automall.

“This signing day is a testament to Clay County District Schools’ proactive approach to preparing students for the workforce of tomorrow,” Superintendent David Broskie said.

“I often discuss our mission in the school district for our students as the three E’s, which are to prepare our students to enroll in further education, enlist in the military or enter the workforce directly upon graduation.

"By providing access to high-quality career and technical education programs, we empower students to explore career pathways and develop valuable skills that are in high demand in our current job market in Northeast Florida. I am confident that the students signing their trade letters of intent will significantly contribute to their industries and communities," Broskie said.

Article written by Jack Randall

Clay Today Online