Sussex Technical High School senior Jacqueline Yeo, of Laurel, was named Delaware’s PowerPoint Champion after a statewide skills challenge, and will represent the First State in the national championships later in 2019.

Yeo, a Sussex Tech business, finance and marketing student who plans to attend Salisbury University to study business, said the PowerPoint challenge required a solid knowledge of the slideshow program’s tools and functions, including changing formats, adding slides, creating animations and using transitions. Yeo’s score on a timed statewide assessment was tops in the state.

Succeeding in the competition is not just about learning the nuts and bolts of a software program, Yeo said.

“We’re able to translate it into skills for our future careers,” she said. “And as we learn each skill, it enhances our memory so we can do better at learning other things.”

Yeo began using Microsoft Office products in middle school, and honed her skills in the business, finance and marketing career area at Sussex Tech.

For the Certiport Microsoft Office Specialist U.S. National Championship, running June 17-19 in Orlando, Florida, Yeo will have to undertake a more free-form challenge. State champions are given a blank template and must create a slideshow from scratch that meets the competition parameters and the assignment’s goals. The winner coming out of that competition will represent the U.S. in the world championship in New York City in July.

Sussex Tech’s business, finance and marketing career area gives students direct, hands-on experience in running in-school businesses, as well as a practical grounding in soft skills like public speaking, organization and team management, said business instructor Frank Makray.

“We’re proud of our students for developing technical skills as well as showing personal initiative, both of which are vital to careers in business,” said Makray. “Jacqueline is a great example of how our students are prepared to excel in the workforce and in the classroom.”