Burge Named Finalist for MCEF Student of the Year

Published 9:35 am Thursday, April 22, 2021

Area career and technical education standout competes for state’s top honors


PEARL ― Levi Burge, a third-year welding student at Pearl River Central High School Career and Technical Education Center, is a finalist for student of the year honors from the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation. Winners will be announced May 7 at the MCEF awards and graduation dinner in Pearl.

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Burge was named student of the month for MCEF’s southern region in February, automatically qualifying as a finalist for student of the year along with six other monthly district winners for the 2020-21 school year.


“Our annual awards and graduation dinner is an opportunity to recognize Mississippi’s best and brightest students and to honor the hard work and dedication they’ve demonstrated in preparing for their futures,” said Mike Barkett, MCEF president. “These outstanding students also are helping ensure that Mississippi has a highly skilled workforce to support the state’s growing construction and manufacturing industries.”


Instructor nominations for student of the month are based on grades, attendance, class discipline, outstanding achievements, leadership abilities and post-graduation plans. During the annual celebration, MCEF will name three students of the year from a field of 18 district students of the month. Winners will receive $500 cash prizes.


Burge is a leader in the classroom and the shop. Touting a 3.6 grade point average, he holds core and welding credentials from the National Center for Construction Education and Research. His skills earned him top honors in the 2019 FFA welding competition along with the class award for welding.


Away from school, Burge enjoys construction work with his father in addition to serving as a firefighter with Derby Whitesand Volunteer Fire Department.


Upon graduation, he plans to work as a pipefitter for two years before establishing his own mobile welding service.


Other student of the year finalists from the southern region are Tyler Latack and Johnathan Steele II, Jackson County Technology Center; Cole Sciacca, Hancock County Career Technical Center; Trevor McLeod, Greene County Vocational Center; Harley Zeigler, Franklin County Career and Technical Center; and Korbin Gospodinovich, Academic Institutes at Gulfport High School.


As part of its annual awards program, MCEF also will present $500 scholarships to winners of the MCEF and Mississippi State Board of Contractors scholarship program.  In addition, MCEF will recognize its 2021 apprentice graduates along with winners of the state craft competition.


The mission of the non-profit MCEF is to promote careers, recruit capable individuals and train a quality workforce for the construction and manufacturing industries in the state of Mississippi. MCEF also offers workforce training and credentialing in construction, industrial maintenance and manufacturing trades.


More awards day information is available by calling 601-605-2989 or emailing dianna@mcef.net. Learn more about MCEF at http://mcef.net.