(WACO) – Timothy Watkins grew up on a ranch in Milam County working on fences and repairing tractors.
“We built our house there and I got to be part of that,” he said.
Watkins, 24, a Building Construction Technology major at Texas State Technical College, did not know his talents would land a nationwide scholarship. The Cameron resident was one of 28 recipients of Fine Homebuilding’s #KeepCraftAlive Scholarship. He was honored at a reception at SkillsUSA’s 54th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference in late June in Louisville, Kentucky.
He said he was grateful for the $2,500 scholarship.
“I’ve been paying for each semester out-of-pocket, so it helps,” he said.
John Russell, an instructor in TSTC’s Building Construction Technology program, encouraged Watkins to apply for the scholarship given to SkillsUSA high school and college students, along with organization alumni, studying in the construction field.
SkillsUSA is a professional organization teaching technical, academic and employability skills that help high school and college students pursue successful careers.
Russell said he admired Watkins’ demeanor and attentiveness.
“His attention to detail is rarely surpassed,” Russell said. “He is an ‘A’ student in my classes. He always has the answer if called upon in class. He is soft spoken and respectful at all times.”
While at the SkillsUSA conference, Watkins represented TSTC and the state in the Cabinetmaking contest. It was the first time he participated in SkillsUSA.
“I’ve always been interested in challenging myself,” he said. “I was calm in the beginning of the competition. I did run into a mistake and was able to fix it. I tried to make the right cuts and be consistent. I’m definitely inspired to complete some more projects.”
Watkins graduated in 2012 from C.H. Yoe High School in Cameron. He did home remodeling as an after-school job.
“I’ve always been interested in being challenging myself,” Watkins said. “I’ve always loved building.”
Watkins is scheduled to graduate from TSTC in spring 2019 with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Building Construction Technology.
After graduation, Watkins wants to work in the construction field in the Austin area.
For more information on Texas State Technical College or to register for fall classes, go to tstc.edu.