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Lahainaluna wood shop students continue tradition of excellence

By Staff | Apr 29, 2010

From left, Jacob Howard, Ikaika Lum Lung, Kha Nguyen, Fallon Van Hermet, Hi‘ilei Bacalso and Jeremy Delos Reyes show off the students’ award-winning entries.

LAHAINA — From the 1950s to the turn of the century, Lahainaluna High School wood shop instructor Bob Sakado established a quality tradition in this field that has carried on into the current generation.

Jeremy Delos Reyes, a student of Sakado who credits his former mentor with founding the program at Lahainaluna — as well as teaching him most of what he knows as a woodworking teacher — is the current leader of the class at the West Side campus.

With the inspiration and knowledge that Sakado provided for Delos Reyes, the learning curve in the practical arts continues on a high level at LHS.

At the 2010 Career and Technical Education (CTE) Showcase held April 5-7 at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu, Delos Reyes’ students represented Lahainaluna in typical fashion with several top honors — including an unprecedented 53rd consecutive “Best In Show” award.

This CTE event, run in conjunction with the State Science Fair, brings together the top high school practical arts programs from across the state to compete for top honors.

The Lahainaluna contingent that traveled to the event included seniors Jacob Howard, Ikaika Lum Lung and Fallon Van Hermet, and juniors Hi‘ilei Bacalso and Kha Nguyen.

Delos Reyes reported that several of his other students sent projects to the competition but were unable to attend due to budget restrictions. That group included seniors Shaleina Llanes, Lance Baker and Mark Viloria.

Howard’s project took first place in the Lamp Division and also was recognized as Best In Show. Baker was the runner-up in this category.

In the General Woodworking competition, LHS students swept the top prizes with ukulele creations by Lum Lung, Van Hermet and Bacalso finishing in that order.

Bacalso, who played a major role in the Lady Lunas’ run to the state basketball championship this winter, added a gold medal in the Wood Turning Division with her lidded bowl.

Nguyen earned first place recognition in the Wood Carving category with his six-man model canoe, while Viloria’s project also took first place honors in the Table Making division.

Llanes’ chessboard won the top award in General Woodworking.

“All of these kids have a definite curiosity to learn, and they also have a great work ethic,” said Delos Reyes last week.    

“They have that desire to learn new things, and they put in the time and effort to carry through and finish their work. This is becoming unusual in this era of kids looking for instant gratification.”

The Lahainaluna architectural drafting class was also represented well at the CTE event with instructor Mike Sado’s students earning several top awards.

In the Architectural Working Drawings category, juniors Jayson Lizada, Chantelle Charkas and Krystille Bayudan took first, second and third, respectively; while seniors Jing Hua and Abigail Myrene Tamayo swept the top places in the 2B Division of the same event.

Tamayo also took home the gold medal in the Architectural CADD Drawing competition, junior Elton Rivera took first in the Mechanical Drawing Division and classmate Austin Takemoto won the Mechanical CAD Drawing category.