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West Valley City Journal

Hunter High School named best technical training school in country

Dec 01, 2017 08:00AM ● By Jennifer Gardiner

Hunter High School’s automotive students, teachers and administrators are awarded 2017 school of the year. (Photo/Granite School District)

During a surprise ceremony for students and faculty, WIX Filters, a global manufacturer of filtration products, along with representatives from Tomorrow’s Tech magazine, named Hunter High School as the 2017 School of the Year.

Hunter High School is the 10th recipient of the annual program and was named the best technical training school in the country. 

“We felt Hunter High School did a great job on their entry video, showing us and telling us why they deserved the title this year,” said Jennifer Gibson, brand manager for WIX Filters. “The school runs a large and dynamic automotive program, all under just one instructor. Their passion is clear, and it’s obvious they love what they do. We’re proud to present the School of the Year award to these students; we know they will continue to accomplish great things.”

As the 2017 School of the Year, Hunter High School received a $2,500 donation to the school’s automotive technology program from WIX Filters, merchandise from O’Reilly Auto Parts and WIX Filters, travel for the school’s instructor and a guest to Las Vegas to attend Babcox Media’s recognition dinner at the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX).

“Receiving the award has been a great honor and accomplishment for our school, our students and myself,” said Tyler Perkins, the automotive technology teacher at Hunter High School. “Our students take pride in our shop and keep it clean, even after heavy use and understand the importance of shop safety, vehicle maintenance, diagnosis, and repair of vehicles today in our industry.”

 Perkins said Hunter received the award by being nominated for the school of the year online at

“Our school received enough nominations that we ended up getting on the list for top 20 schools in the nation for nominations,” Perkins said. “We were then asked to make a video highlighting our program and we sent it in. Later, we were then notified that we were selected as school of the year and a surprise presentation was held for our students on the 18th of October in the shop…” 

Perkins said the school has an active SkillsUSA program which is an active club that participates in the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge. 

“My students (a team of five) were able to qualify in May of this year for the nationals event in Las Vegas at the SEMA show on October 30th,” Perkins said. 

“Each student will be competing for scholarships up to $10,000 and will leave with no less than $5,000 each. Our students have worked hard to fundraise and we were also able to reach out into the industry and received financial support from shops like Lynn’s Auto Service, Bailey’s Auto Service, Larry H. Miller Dodge in Sandy, and ABRA Auto Body and Glass to help fund the trip for my students to compete in Vegas.”

Perkins said his students accomplished a lot in the last few years and believes his focus on having his students engaged in the classroom, in the shop, and in the clubs is the reason why they received the nominations. 

“My students are having fun, yet they are learning critical soft skills and technical skills that will make them successful in their career, ultimately helping to eliminate the skills gap our country is facing today,” Perkins said. 

The School of the Year program is open to all high schools and post-secondary schools with a subscription to Tomorrow’s Tech magazine. 

“This program is a great way to recognize the technical training talent across the nation,” said Dean Martin, publisher of Tomorrow’s Tech. “With each year, the competition continues to grow and Hunter High is an outstanding example of the type of program we’re looking to highlight.”

Of the 370 entries for this year’s contest, 86 were from different high schools, technical schools and colleges in four regions of the United States.