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Sharpening public safety skills at RCA
RCA students Selena Ortega, Danielle Shy, and Devin Bussey and Cambridge High students Sam Hart and Liz Lim get valuable feedback from volunteer Matt Mahathey. - photo by Darrell Everidge

Public Safety students from Rockdale Career Academy, Cambridge High School in Fulton County, and Locust Grove High School in Henry County put their skills to the test with a scrimmage in SkillsUSA competition areas Jan. 11 at RCA.

About 30-45 students competed in Tactical Team, Crime Scene Investigation, Criminal Justice, Quiz Bowl, Speed Handcuffing, Firearms Simulator, Firefighting and CPR/First AID events. Afterward, instructors from Georgia Piedmont Technical College, the Conyers Police Department, RCA, Rockdale Fire and Rescue, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigations and more, scored their performances and gave extensive feedback. The scrimmage prepared students for the state SkillsUSA competition in March at the Georgia International Convention Center in Atlanta. 

RCA Public Safety Instructor Ben McCumber said, “We tried to take a lot of the competition side out of it. We really wanted the kids to get their chance to participate and really get coaching. From that standpoint, it went great. The students got one-on-one coaching from people in the industry.” More schools were originally signed up to participate but had makeup events due to the inclement weather day earlier in the week.

RCA public safety students have competed at the state SkillsUSA competitions for the past three years and RCA’s tactical team won gold at the state level last year. About 270 students are currently enrolled in the Emergency Services pathway and Law and Justice pathway.