BOUQUETS>> To the 70 students at the Northern Career Institute working to create a new Eastlake skate park.
Students in the welding program have worked on the new skate park ramps and equipment since last October. Excel TECC students in Mayfield originally designed the new park.
This school year, NCI’s welding program has 35 juniors and 35 seniors, instructor Mike Kirchhevel said.
“Basically all we’re doing is we’re installing everything, putting it together,” Kirchhevel said. “We have one more ramp; we’re finishing it. It’s like 24 by 24 (feet), it’s this huge piece that goes over in the corner. It’s going to be four more pieces in that corner we’re going to have to install.”
The new skate park will be the city’s first since the most recent park was demolished over safety concerns in 2016.
There is no set timeline for the project’s completion date, but Kirchhevel said that the goal was to finish by the end of the year. Each group of students has just over one hour to work on the skate park every day.
“They all worked on this (skate park),” Kirchhevel said. “They’re helping finishing up while they’re also getting certifications (for career options).”
Kirchhevel highlighted that his welding students have been mostly self-reliant while working on the project.
“They’ve done all of it,” he said. “We help out when we can and I like to get in there and help sometimes too. They might be struggling through a section and we’ll try to talk them through it… but it’s been mainly them.”
Students getting real-world training on job skills while improving the community — that’s something worth celebrating.