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GBI's Riley O’Neal wins the Regional IEC Wire-Off

5 years ago

GBI's Austin, TX division sends our Electrician apprentices to the IEC (Independent Electrical Contractors) competition each year for 4th year graduating students. 

It is a rare honor for a sponsoring contractor to have a student qualifying to compete, and the winning student is named Apprentice of the Year.  Even just qualifying to compete is a lengthy process.  The top 10% from our 3 regional schools took a written test covering the NEC.  The students with the top six scores moved on to the other components of the competition over the course of 10 days; troubleshooting, pipe bending and one-line drawing.  The competition culminated into a wire-off competition that took place on May 31st. 

The competitors were given a drawing and materials and then had six hours to complete the project.  Riley was not only the first to finish but also the only one to have his project completed 100% correctly.  Now he will represent GBI at the IEC National Conference in October.  He will continue to train with his teachers through the summer to prepare for the competition, which is said to be even more difficult than the regional competition. 

It’s interesting to note that GBI's own Shawn Hizey inspired Riley to work toward making it to the competition.  Riley remembered that Shawn competed back when he was a 4th year student.  Shawn finished in second place in the regional competition, so Riley said that if he could do at least as well as Shawn then he would be proud of himself for that accomplishment.  But it turns out 1st place is a little sweeter!  He won some nice tools and $500! 

Riley also demonstrated the GBI committment to safety and was the only competitor who wore the proper PPE at all times, which helped him to score the maximum points.

    Congratulations to Riley O'Neal - Apprentice of the Year!

More photos of the event can be found at:

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