ROBINSON, Ill. (WTWO/WAWV) — Lincoln Trail College Process Technology students took third place in the North American Process Technology Alliance’s Troubleshooting Skills Competition in Pasadena, Texas. LTC’s team consisted of Sheldon Myers, Travis Selby, Brandon Blackwell, and Levi Dennison.

“I am very lucky to have a talented array of students,” said LTC Process Technology instructor Tina Lindley. “First of all, it was a great opportunity for my students to be able to compete with other colleges. They were able to talk to the other competitors and coaches to learn about the other Process Technology programs in North America. The students were also able to network with some Process Industries while at the competition. Placing third in the competition was just the icing on the cake for my students and myself. I’m very proud of my students.”

The competition features advanced Process Technology students from across the nation. Students use simulation software provided by Simtronics Corporation to demonstrate their knowledge and skills. Teams of four work together to troubleshoot a process upset. To qualify for the event, students must currently be enrolled in a Process Technology program on a full or part-time basis. They cannot be employed now or in the past in the industry as an operator. 

“This is the epitome of what a workforce development event needs to be for the industry,” said Adam Ali, Manager of Workforce Development for the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers. “These are the best and brightest that are eventually going to get jobs in this important industry that contributes so much, from the nation’s economy to everyone’s daily lives.”

“This is the second year we’ve competed in the competition, and it is the second year we’ve placed in the top three. One of the reasons is because my adjunct instructor Mike Bachelor and I have a total of 66 years in the Process Industry,” said Lindley.

According to NAPTA, enhanced problem-solving/troubleshooting skills help with student understanding of the process, help them to be safer employees, and help them to be better team players. All these traits are high on the list for employers in their search for entry-level employees.

Lindley says the fact that LTC students can compete successfully against larger schools shows how talented they are and that they can do the job required of a process technician.