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SkillsUSA Board of Directors Meets in North Carolina

April 1st, 2013

The SkillsUSA board of directors met on March 12-13 in Huntersville, N.C. The meeting was hosted by IRWIN at their corporate offices and Learning and Development Center. IRWIN kicked off the board meeting with dinner at the Peninsula Club on Lake Norman and Rich Wuerthele, president of IRWIN, spoke to the group and brought the official welcome. Six IRWIN staff members participated in the evening event, including our host and board member, Nick Mastrone and YDF member Cheryl Mehrmann.

The morning of March 13 began with an overview of the Newell Rubbermaid family of brands by Rich and an overview of the IRWIN operations and workforce awareness programs by Nick. The board then toured the Learning and Development Center and learned how product research, development and testing are performed on a variety of products. Our main tour guide, Doug Nelson, IRWIN’s senior prototype manager, told us at the beginning of the tour that he was a SkillsUSA member back when it was VICA and he is still involved assisting with SkillsUSA competitions. It’s always great to see success in former members.

The board’s business meeting was March 14 and we were pleased that Peyton Holland, N.C., college/postsecondary state association director joined us for the day. A big thank-you goes to Nick Mastrone and the entire IRWIN team for their incredible hospitality and for a high quality experience for the board and staff at their corporate offices.

Highlights

April 1st, 2013
  • Staff made development visits in Texas on Monday, March 11. First stop was at Burlington Northern and Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway in Ft. Worth. BNSF Railway operates more than 1,000 trains a day on one of the largest freight rail transportation networks in North America. BNSF will have an outdoor display at SkillsUSA TECHSPO. The second visit was with The Dwyer Group in Waco where they discussed women in the trades scholarships for our students. The Dwyer Group offers franchise business opportunities including Air Serv, Mr. Appliance, Mr. Rooter, Mr. Electric, Rainbow International, The Grounds Guys and Glass Doctor.
  • Staff traveled to Reno, Nev. with associates from the Ringenburg Group to conduct the last of four high school and college/postsecondary focus group sessions. The research was conducted with teachers and students of both membership levels. Staff facilitated educational resource and skill development training for the participants when they were not in the focus group meetings. A report compiling the focus group findings will be provided to the SkillsUSA marketing team in May and will be used to direct the membership and marketing plan for the organization.
  • Speaking of alumni success stories. Staff reports that the summer issue of SkillsUSA Champions magazine will feature a former SkillsUSA member who is now a successful food stylist for a major home shopping network.
  • On March 14-15  I travelled to Louisville, Ky., where we met with executives from Ford Motor Company and General Electric. We also met with the new president of the Kentucky State Fair Board and toured some potential storage facilities. We also met with staff at the Kentucky Department of Education, including Fran Dundon and new state association director, Larry Johnson.

Alumni Membership Incentive

February 27th, 2013

Join the SkillsUSA Alumni and FriendsThe Alumni Coordinating Committee is offering an incentive for SkillsUSA advisors who sign up alumni from their chapters. For every five members an advisor registers with the SkillsUSA Alumni & Friends Association, he or she will be entered into a drawing for a $100 Lowe’s gift card.

To be officially entered into the drawing, the advisor must have students register online at: www.skillsusa.org/supporters/alumnijoin.shtml. (Paper forms will not be accepted.) The advisor must then send an email to Byekwaso Gilbert at bgilbert@skillsusa.org. The email must contain all of the following: the advisor’s name, school, address, phone and email (make sure what you provide will be accessible to you after June 1); and, a list (for verification) of the students (first and last names) who registered as alumni.

Remember that graduating seniors qualify to register during their senior year. Former SkillsUSA students are also eligible, provided they are not members already. These students must register through their former advisor to be counted as part of that advisor’s entry. Students may only register once. Deadline for entry into the drawing is June 1.

Alumni Membership Incentive

February 12th, 2013

Alumni membershipThe Alumni Coordinating Committee is offering an incentive for SkillsUSA advisors who sign up alumni from their chapters. For every five members an advisor registers with the SkillsUSA Alumni & Friends Association, he or she will be entered into a drawing for a $100 Lowe’s gift card.

To be officially entered into the drawing, the advisor must have students register online at: www.skillsusa.org/supporters/alumnijoin.shtml. (Paper forms will not be accepted.) The advisor must then send an email to Byekwaso Gilbert at bgilbert@skillsusa.org. The email must contain all of the following:

  • the advisor’s name, school, address, phone and email (make sure what you provide will be accessible to you after June 1)
  • a list (for verification) of the students (first and last names) who registered as alumni

Remember that graduating seniors qualify to register during their senior year. Former SkillsUSA students are also eligible, provided they are not members already. These students must register through their former advisor to be counted as part of that advisor’s entry. Students may only register once. Deadline for entry into the drawing is June 1. 

Alumni Coordinating Committee Nominations

January 31st, 2013

The SkillsUSA Alumni Coordinating Committee (ACC) is seeking nominations for Regions I, III and V. If you, or someone you know, would like to run for a position on the committee, please complete the nomination form. The form is posted online at: www.skillsusa.org/supporters/alumniballot.shtml. This dynamic group provides leadership and guidance in furthering the goals and purposes of SkillsUSA and its alumni. This group of elected volunteers works directly with the national staff and meets regularly to carry out alumni projects. Please contact Heidi Walsh at hwalsh@skillsusa.org if you have questions or would like more information. You can also visit our website. Nominations must be received by April 1, 2013.

Alumni Coordinating Committee Nominations

December 20th, 2012

Alumni Coordinating Committee

The SkillsUSA Alumni Coordinating Committee (ACC) is seeking nominations for Regions I, III and V. If you, or someone you know, would like to run for a position on the committee, please complete the nomination form. The form is posted online at: www.skillsusa.org/supporters/alumniballot.shtml. This dynamic group provides leadership and guidance in furthering the goals and purposes of SkillsUSA and its alumni. This group of elected volunteers works directly with the national staff and meets regularly to carry out alumni projects.

Please contact Heidi Walsh at hwalsh@skillsusa.org if you have questions or would like more information.

Alumni Pin Design Contest

December 13th, 2012

The SkillsUSA Alumni and Friends Association is sponsoring an alumni pin design contest. The winning design will become the official alumni pin for the 2013 National Leadership and Skills Conference. The deadline for pin designs to be received by the national office is February 28. Designs must be received, not postmarked by February 28, and those submitting designs must be registered alumni members. If you have any questions, please contact Heidi Walsh at hwalsh@skillsusa.org or call 703-737-0615. For more information and contest guidelines, go to: www.skillsusa.org/supporters/alumni.shtml.

Highlights

December 1st, 2012
  • On November 7, a staff member and I took the train to West Orange, N.J. to meet with the CEO, two group VPs, the marketing director and the business development director of Lincoln Educational Systems, the parent company of Lincoln Technical Institute among several other colleges. We were joined by Pete Carey, New Jersey state association director, three of his advisors and two of his state officers, both from the Gloucester County Institute of Technology.
  • The Alumni Coordinating Committee met at the national center for a three-day meeting, November 9-11. They reviewed their FY13 objectives, did some FY14 planning and put together plans for the national conference.
  • We recently received some good news on sponsorship. 3M Company, which was a sponsor years ago, has pledged in-kind support for the SkillsUSA Championships and pledged $36,000 to support our WorldTeam Cabinetmaking contestant. And, Interstate Battery System of America has already pledged $25,000 for next year. Interstate is pleased by the response of our chapters to the fundraising plan calling it the “best early response by any organization.”
  • Two staff members represented the national office during the recent Mid-America Conference in Columbus, Nebraska. They report it was a highly successful experience for all of the students and teachers attending and that Greg Stahr, Nebraska state association director, did a great job leading the event.
  • Welcome to our newest board member representing NASDCTEc, Scott Stump, Colorado associate provost for career and technical education. Scott is currently serving as NASDCTEc’s secretary/treasurer, and he knows student organizations having worked for National FFA and served as state FFA advisor.
  • And, finally, the board will be meeting by webinar, December 3-4. The spring board meeting will be held on March 13, hosted by Nick Mastrone at IRWIN corporate headquarters in Huntersville, N.C.

Highlights

November 15th, 2012

In his recent essay in the National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) Friends of CTE Blog Series, SkillsUSA Champion of the Year, Nick Pinchuk of Snap-on says “When some say the American worker is the problem, I say no . . . the American worker is the answer. We need to enable workers with both training and respect. Because of that, CTE and SkillsUSA have never been more important to assure a prosperous American future. ” To read the complete essay on the importance of CTE and America’s workforce and based on his remarks during the Champion of the Year events, please visit: http://blog.careertech.org/?p=7329.

Jennifer McNelly, president of the Manufacturing Institute and new member of the Youth Development Foundation, was honored recently in the inaugural 100 Women Leaders in STEM, a showcase for the careers and initiatives of women leaders who are active role models for STEM professionals. Congratulations go to Jennifer.

On October 25, staff and I conducted a webinar on the Skill Connect Assessments for the Arizona Department of Education. Joining the one-hour presentation were the state superintendent of education, the assistant superintendent and others in Arizona working on career planning and assessments. The presentation went well, and they certainly appeared to be interested. In a related development, Daniele Stacey of National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) came by the national office on October 18 to meet with me to discuss how our Skill Connect Assessments could cooperate with the NCCER assessments. Daniele said NCCER also wants to increase visibility of SkillsUSA in its own curriculum materials.

In our continuing effort to get information from all of our stakeholders, we invited SkillsUSA Alumni and Friends Association Coordinating Council members Bryan Doxford of New York and Peyton Holland of North Carolina to meet with select staff on October 11. We discussed their vision for the organization and their ideas for areas of emphasis in SkillsUSA including social media networking, videos, a strong alumni association, digital marketing tools and training for all. The full Council just met at the national center, November 9-11.

And, on October 19, we held our annual staff outing with a lovely autumn lunch and wine tasting at a local winery. We honored years of service at the luncheon for five of our staff members: Ashley Ridgeway, five years; Sandy Moore and Roxanne Hodge with 10 years; Tom Kercheval for 15 years; and, Karen Beatty for 45 years of service. While I’m on the topic, I’ll also mention anniversaries of staff from September, October and November: Niki Clausen, 3 years; Byekwaso Gilbert, 12 years; Jane Short, 19 years; Kim Graham, 24 years; Tom Hall, 27 years; Shelly Coates, 32 years; and, Judy Garrison, 34 years. Each and everyone is an amazing resource for SkillsUSA. We have a great staff.

Alumni Program Manager

September 14th, 2012

SkillsUSA is hiring for the position of an alumni program manager. This position administers the responsibilities associated with the management of all aspects of SkillsUSA’s national alumni association.

Minimum Education, License and Experience Requirements
This position requires effective written and verbal communication skills, the ability to manage projects efficiently, conduct research and coordinate attendance at SkillsUSA and other educational events such as school visits, conferences and/or trade shows. Candidates should be organized, detail-oriented, energetic and possess the ability to multi-task and work well with others. Non-profit association experience and alumni experience preferred, especially as a former SkillsUSA member or career and technical student organization member or supporter. Knowledge and/or experience in Microsoft Office software required. Relevant experience and an associate’s or bachelor’s degree is preferred.

Essential Functions of the Job

  • Develop and implement annual and long-range operating plans for Alumni development
  • Design and conduct strategies and tactics to substantially increase Alumni membership and involvement at all levels
  • Develop and promote the tangible and intangible benefits of membership to prospective Alumni members
  • Serve as the primary point of contact for the Alumni Coordinating Committee and coordinate its awards and recognition programs
  • Work directly with state association directors and state alumni coordinators to provide state support
  • In coordination with the Office of Business Partnerships and Development, assist in developing corporate relationships to support the Alumni and SkillsUSA. This includes, but is not limited to, fundraising efforts such as the individual giving campaign

Interested applicants should submit a résumé and cover letter to: Missy Wilson, Human Resources Manager, SkillsUSA, 14001 SkillsUSA Way, Leesburg, VA 20176, or by email to mwilson@skillsusa.org by September 28, 2012.

In keeping with a tradition of respect for the individuality of our members and our role in workforce development, SkillsUSA strives to ensure inclusive participation in all of our programs, partnerships and employment opportunities. SkillsUSA is an equal opportunity employer.

 


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