ASU-Newport Students Excel at SkillsUSA Competition

MARKED TREE, Ark. (5-12-2014) — Three Arkansas State University-Newport students took home first-place honors and nine others finished in the top three in their respective divisions at the annual Arkansas SkillsUSA competition held last month in Hot Springs.

Bethany Williams of Wynne took top honors in the Cosmetology competition, Seth Smithee of Paragould finished first in Electrical Construction Wiring and Donald Kain of Paragould won the Internetworking competition.  All three will now advance to the National SkillsUSA competition, which will be held in June in Kansas City.

Williams will travel to Kansas City following the success of ASU-Newport student Rachel Clements in the 2013 competition.  Clements finished third nationally while representing ASUN in the event.  ASU-Newport’s 12 winners in the 2014 Arkansas SkillsUSA competition were:


1st Place – Bethany Williams – Wynne, Ark.

2nd Place – Erica Zuniga –Trumann, Ark.

3rd Place – Kristy Fox – Keiser, Ark.


2nd Place – Brigitte Schwartz & model Karen Zuniga –Jonesboro, Ark.; Trumann, Ark. (respectively)

3rd Place – Brittany Reed & model Hannah Holt – Jonesboro, Ark.; Marion, Ark. (respectively)

Electrical Construction Wiring

1st Place – Seth Smithee – Paragould, Ark.

3rd Place – Stephen Rasnic – Jonesboro, Ark.


1st Place – Donald Kain – Paragould, Ark.

2nd Place – Lonnie Lawson – Bono, Ark.

3rd Place – Chris Armstrong – Jonesboro, Ark.

Computer Maintenance

2nd Place – Aaron Redmond – Jonesboro, Ark.

3rd Place – John T. Smith – Harrisburg, Ark.

The SkillsUSA Championships are considered the largest single day of corporate volunteerism in America, and valued at $36 million in industry support of donated time, equipment, cash and material.  All contests are run and judged by industry leaders using industry standards for employment.  Over 1,100 industry judges will participate this year, with more than 6,000 students from every state and three territories competing in 98 contests in technical, skilled, health and service occupations.