Job Olympics | Cherry, Kershaw, Schmitz attend life skills competition

Lauren Schutter | sports editor

Three Wabaunsee students competed at Job Olympics March 3, with freshman Canyon Schmitz earning a second place finish in towel folding.

The Job Olympics – an annual competition held in multiple locations across Kansas – is a competition-based workshop that hosts more than 500 students total. Around 100 competitors from the Manhattan area traveled to the K-State Recreation Center for last week’s competition.

The Job Olympics were developed in 2018 in response to requests from area transition coordinators and educators to have a local option for students to compete and participate in an activity in their community.

Sophomore Anthony Cherry sorts laundry. He also competed in vacuuming and wiping tables. Photos courtesy of Lance Fuller.

The event benefits students, as participants demonstrate future job skills in front of judges, who are business people from the community and professionals in education. 

Freshmen Mercedes Kershaw and Canyon Schmitz, as well as sophomore Anthony Cherry, made the trip to Manhattan Thursday with teacher Lance Fuller. “It gets the kids out of a normal school setting and lets them do some life skills to get some post-secondary training in a competitive sense,” Fuller said.

After the day of competitions – several being folding towels, hosting an event, interviewing for a job, or cleaning tables – the top finishers were rewarded for their efforts. 

Freshman Mercedes Kershaw makes change during a competition.

“I did better than I expected in all of the events, but the one I really did well in was making change. It was a very helpful event. I felt comfortable because I had people I knew there,” Kershaw said.

The top-placing schools and competitors are recognized with ribbons, medals and trophies. Canyon Schmitz placed second in towel-folding, a timed event. 

Job Olympics events

Mercedes Kershaw: hostess, job interview, stocking shelves, making change

Anthony Cherry: sorting laundry, vacuuming, wiping tables, folding towels

Canyon Schmitz: folding towels (2nd place), shredding, sorting laundry, stuffing and labeling envelopes

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