Winbush Racing’s Earl Winbush recently met with the top three students in the Halifax County High School Automotive Program to present them with tools and gift cards.
As an annual tradition, he contacts instructor HC Phillps and has him select the three students.
This year, the top student will receive a 325-piece craftsman tool set courtesy of Winbush Racing. The second-place student will receive an 118-piece Die Hard tool set donated by South Boston Advance Auto parts store manager DeWayne Jackson. The third-placed student will receive a 52-piece Matco tool set courtesy of Brain Hundley’s local Matco tool distributor.
The top two students will also receive a $25 gift card from First Choice Transmissions of Danville by owner David Dickens.
The top-ranked student was 18-year-old Christian Midkiff of Liberty. His hobbies are baseball, football, fishing and hunting. His interests are working on cars and helping his father, Steven Midkiff, work on big trucks.
His plans after graduating from high school this spring are to attend Danville Community College and study automotive. He plans to work at KR Snead Trucking while in college. After completing the automotive program, he wants to further his education by going to school to become a mechanical engineer.
He received the 325-piece craftsman tool set and a $25 auto zone gift card.
The second ranked student was Cody Wilkerson, 18, from Vernon Hill and he likes to do anything outdoors. His interests include all things mechanical and working on trucks. Her plans after high school are to go to trade school. He has a very strong interest in attending the Universal Technical Institute. He would like to work for a year after school and then continue his studies at UTI.
His current job is dishwasher at Spainhour Diner. He said he loves his job and has been there for 10 months. He also wants to get a job at a local shop to get some on the job training to get more experience working on the vehicles.
He received the Die Hard 118-piece tool set and the $25 Auto Zone gift card.
The third ranked student is Tessy Henderson, 18, of Oak Level. Her interests are horses and dogs, and she enjoys horseback riding. She also enjoys working on things involving mechanics and welding. She works in a tobacco shop. After graduation, she would like to find a job in a welding workshop. She will receive the Matco 52-piece tool set.
After meeting with the students, Winbush was also able to meet career and technical coordinator Rebecca Saunders.
Saunders explained that she was very proud of the students. At CTE, they work hard to prepare students for the job market. They offer a wide variety of courses to help educate students – in addition to automotive – including medical coding, medical billing, carpentry, nursing, as well as many other trades.
“In conclusion, it was an honor and a pleasure to meet these automotive program students,” said Winbush. “I wish them the best as they begin their journey into the working world.”
He also added: “I want to give special thanks to Ms. Saunders and Mr. Phillps for allowing me to meet these students and rewarding them for their hard work and dedication to the automotive program.”