December 1st, 2009
The annual Association of Career and Technical Education Convention in November was well attended – up approximately 20 percent over the year prior – to 5,300 educators and exhibitors. SkillsUSA was represented in many areas of the conference, and we were particularly proud to see former SkillsUSA board member, Ed Melott, onstage as the new president of ACTE.
Staff reports that our trade show exhibit was like old home week with lots of people stopping by our booth during the two days and some people checking out the Skill Connect Assessments and the new Online PDP. I also understand seminars held by SkillsUSA were well received, and we had good meetings with the Association for Skilled and Technical Sciences (ASTS) and the T&I Division of ACTE.
The second general session during the convention featured Assistant Secretary for the Office of Vocational and Adult Education at the U.S. Department of Education, Brenda Dann-Messier and Assistant Secretary of the Employment and Training Administration at the U.S. Department of Labor, Jane Oates. Both spoke of the important role CTE plays in the growing economy and – as we already knew from previous conversations – the two are working together to find ways to expand education and training opportunities for both youth and adults. I also attended a special invitation session with the secretaries. During a short comment period, I asked both secretaries as they work on integration of academic instruction and CTE to remember the importance of integration of employability skills and the unique role of CTSOs in delivering those skills. I also reminded them of the importance of business and industry partnerships in CTE and the role of student organizations again. Jane Oates, who has known SkillsUSA for years, said to Brenda Dann-Messier: “You’d better be ready for a long line of red blazers at your door.”
And, I was invited to serve on an expert panel of four during a meeting with representatives of the Chicago Public Schools who are working on a retooling plan for CTE in Chicago. With me on the panel were Jim Stone, National Research Center for CTE, Bill Daggett from the International Center for Leadership in Education and Greg Betheil with the New York City Department of Education. Also attending the meeting was Special Assistant and Advisor to Secretary Duncan, Greg Darneider. (Remember, Secretary Duncan was the CEO of Chicago Public Schools, so there’s a direct interest.) It was a lively discussion.
November 19th, 2009
This week I’m attending the conference for the Association of Career and Technical Education (ACTE) in Nashville, Tenn. We had a great board meeting and CMI at Tennessee State University yesterday.
Former SkillsUSA Board of Directors member, Ed Mellott.
I’m in opening session now. I’m very proud to see Ed Mellott, former SkillsUSA Board of Directors member, leading the session as the 2009 ACTE president. I’m also proud to see the Tennessee SkillsUSA students as welcome/greeters to welcome all to opening session this morning.
Chef Jeff Henderson speaks at the Opening Session.
The keynote speaker of the opening session is Chef Jeff Henderson. He’s a former prison inmate, now mentorand star of the Food Network program, The Chef Jeff Project.
I’m looking forward to the workshops today ‑ including two sessions on the Work Force Ready System. Make sure to review the ACTE Staff schedule for other SkillsUSA workshops throughout the convention.
SkillsUSA staff and National Officer Brandon Mullings at SkillsUSA's booth.
Our booth opens today at 10 a.m. (CST). We have some great SkillsUSA National Officers here leading the booth.
November 1st, 2009
State Farm is sponsoring a Chapter Management Institute (CMI) that will provide instructors with the tools they need to develop, manage and advise a SkillsUSA Chapter in their school or classroom. Participants explore the mission of SkillsUSA; learn to use the multitude of resources available and engage in hands-on activities. The training utilizes interactive sessions and provides answers to questions such as: How do I get students involved? What is the best way to organize our activities? What does a chapter set out to do? What is a Program of Work? What materials are available to help students? This is a must for beginning or novice advisors wanting to start a chapter or better manage an existing chapter.
Take advantage of this low-cost training to learn how SkillsUSA can help your students to succeed – on the job and in life. The training will be held on November 18 from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Tennessee State University – TSU Avon Williams Campus, Room 313, 330 10th Avenue, North, Nashville, Tenn.
Training and materials are free to participants. There is a $30 registration fee to cover evening meal and breaks. Note: Bus transportation from Gaylord Hotel 9 Delta Entrance) to TSU is available for an additional $20.00.
To register, call Stephanie Bland at 703-737-0622 or email to email@example.com. Include your name, school, school address, phone number and e-mail address. Please let Stephanie know if you are interested in bus transportation when you register.
Registration Deadline: November 2, 2009
Note: Minimum attendance for each seminar is 25 participants.
For more information: www.skillsusa.org/educators/cmi.shtml.
November 1st, 2009
The Association for Skilled and Technical Sciences (ASTS) will be holding education sessions prior to the ACTE Conference. Participants will be able to choose three sessions, beginning with an opening session at 8:00 a.m. There will a SkillsUSA institute; a session on how to develop a true academy; ADDA International will offer an industry certification information session for drafting, design and graphic arts programs; a session on best practices automotive students for competition; and, a tour of the Kentucky Corvette Plant. Buses will depart from the Delta entrance of the Convention Center to TSU Avon Williams Campus at 7:15 a.m. For more information and the registration form go to: www.skillsusa.org/downloads/PDF/astsreg.pdf
The registration deadline is November 13, 2009.
August 15th, 2009
Trade and Industrial Educators and Administrators are invited to submit nominations for the ACTE National Trade and Industrial Education Division Awards. Qualified people may be nominated by individuals or groups. You may also nominate yourself. Please inform the person you are nominating.
See www.skillsusa.org/educators/acte.shtml for more information.
May 1st, 2009
I want to again express SkillsUSA’s appreciation to the Youth Development Foundation members who stepped up to sign a letter to the Obama administration and to Congress to show their support. The letter was sent by ACTE and a final copy can be seen at http://tinyurl.com/cwwfxe.
ACTE developed a release and then our communications office sent it through VOCUS to education trades. Education Week wrote about it. A link to the article follows: http://tinyurl.com/cmzsxp
April 15th, 2009
We had an excellent Youth Development Foundation meeting in Torrance, California at Toyota, March 24-25. A dozen companies were represented. Much of the discussion centered on maintaining or building corporate support given the state of the economy. Foundation members are cautiously optimistic about future support. Peyton Sellers also attended, and there was discussion of further NASCAR related promotions with Jig-A-Loo.
Dave Camden said that despite the economic challenges, he “wanted to do this meeting the Toyota way,” and he did. Toyota Senior Vice President Robert C. Daly addressed the group as did Group Vice President, Toyota Customer Services Jane Beseda. Almost just as good, Toyota announced it was increasing its contribution to SkillsUSA by $10,000 this year. That’s good news no matter what the state of the economy. Thanks go to Dave and Toyota for being exceptional hosts. The next YDF meeting will be held in Calgary during the WorldSkills Competition.
I want to express SkillsUSA’s appreciation to the YDF members who stepped up to sign a letter to the Obama Administration and to Congress requesting increased funding for career and technical education. The Association for Career and Technical Education, the National Association of Directors for Career and Technical Education consortium and the National Association of Community Colleges requested the support. All three were very happy to add the support of business leaders to the letter. To see the final version of the letter go to: http://www.acteonline.org/uploadedFiles/Issues_and_Advocacy/files/FY10_President_Signon.doc.