Ulster BOCES SkillsUSA Students Excel in State Competition

Ulster BOCES SkillsUSA Students Excel in State Competition

Stefan Frasca, an Ulster BOCES Culinary Arts student from Onteora High School, and Alaina Cupo, a Cosmetology student from Highland High School, won medals for their workplace knowledge and techniques in the 2021 SkillsUSA State competitions held virtually in April.

Frasca, who placed first in his competition, now qualifies to compete in the virtual National SkillsUSA match on June 24. He will be judged in areas including knife cuts, chicken fabrication, and the preparation of a soup, an appetizer, and an entrée. Frasca and his fellow competitors will be scored on sanitation, safety, knife skills, cooking methods, technique, creative plating, tasting, and proper uniform. 

According to Ulster BOCES Culinary Arts instructor Irene Powell, Frasca is an accomplished student whose academic and professional achievements include being named student of the month at the Career & Technical Center, garnering the Ulster BOCES “Career Climbers” designation, and being inducted into the National Technical Honor Society (NTHS). Frasca, whose career plans include becoming a chef and a restaurant owner, currently works at Tetta’s Market and Pizzeria in Olivebridge. He will be attending the Culinary Institute of America in the fall.

Cupo came in third in the statewide Cosmetology competition. Cosmetology teacher Tracy Reeves says that Cupo’s technical skills are above average, and she is a positive role model to her classmates. She is also well respected by her peers. In addition to being the secretary and treasurer of the Area 4 SkillsUSA club, Alaina is also the 2021 Career & Technical Center’s valedictorian, and president of the NTHS.

Cosmetology instructor and SkillsUSA advisor Kate Weston had nothing but praise for Cupo. “She is responsible, dependable, smart, articulate, competent, and most importantly, kind,” she says.

SkillsUSA brings together students, teachers, and industry professionals with the aim of ensuring that the United States has a skilled workforce. Find more information on SkillsUSA here.

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