Faces of CNM: Angel Sital

Angel will be representing CNM at the National SkillsUSA Championship later this month
June 01, 2021

Angel Sital says he’s loved construction as long as he can remember. He would follow his dad around as he worked on their house and jumped at the chance to take woodshop during his sophomore year at Albuquerque High. After his first project, he was hooked. 

“That first Albuquerque High project, which was just a box, was a lot of fun and really rewarding and I haven’t looked back since,” Angel says.  

Today, Angel is one term away from graduating with his associate in Carpentry and Construction Technology. After he finishes, he plans to stay at CNM for another degree to increase his skill set and eventually wants to open a contracting business. 

Later this month, Angel will also be participating in the Carpentry competition at the National SkillsUSA Championships. SkillsUSA is a nationwide organization that promotes the skilled trades and Angel qualified for the national event after placing first at the New Mexico SkillsUSA State Leadership & Skills Conference. As part of the national competition, Angel will be up against the best construction students from around the country.

The national event is normally held at one location where students fly in to compete side-by-side (this year it was scheduled for Atalanta), but because of COVID-19, all the 2021 competitions will be done virtually. Angel will have to build the same, timed carpentry project as all the other competitors, but he’ll do it here at CNM and will be filmed via Zoom. There will also be a non-CNM tradesperson with him to proctor the competition. 

Angel says he’s both disappointed and excited about the format. He would have liked to fly out to see another state, but he’s also excited to complete the project on his home turf and without the other competitors hovering around.

“I think it’s an advantage that I won’t have a bunch of other people right next to me and I won’t have to watch them as they get two or three steps ahead, which would make me nervous,” he says. 

Joseph Hirschfeld, one of Angel’s carpentry instructors, says he has no doubt that Angel will do well at the national competition. 

“It takes a real leader to even compete at this level,” Joseph says. “And Angel has always had the ambition and eagerness to learn and get the job done right.”

Angel says that if he can stay focused, and not let the pressure get to him, he should do fine.

“I’m a perfectionist, so I just have to tell myself to keep things slow enough to do well, but to move fast enough to get the project done,” he says. 

Learn more about SkillsUSA.