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GAERF 2012 Student Design Competition

March 13th, 2012

The Graphic Arts Education and Research Foundation (GAERF) has announced the launch of the GAERF 2012 Student Design Competition, themed “Why Hire Me?” This annual contest, in its fourth year, challenges participants to demonstrate their creativity and skill by creating a marketing campaign that positions themselves as ideal candidates for a career they select in the graphic communications industry.

First-place winners and their instructors will receive a two-day, all-inclusive paid trip to attend GRAPH EXPO in Chicago, Ill. The winning students will receive an award of $2,000 presented during GRAPH EXPO 2012’s Career Awareness Day, October 10, 2012. Second-place winners will be awarded $1,500, and the third-place winners will receive $1,000.

For complete information about the GAERF 2012 Student Design Competition, visit The entry deadline is June 15.

National Education Startup Challenge

February 21st, 2012

The U.S. Department of Education is launching the National Education Startup Challenge. They are inviting students to develop an innovative solution to an education problem and design a blueprint for a new company or organization – a startup – to deliver that solution.

Students from across the country are invited to submit a business plan and a video pitch for a for-profit or non-profit startup that includes an innovative strategy, product or service designed to address one of these four topics:

  1. Middle Grades Matter
    Helping middle school students transition to high school and stay on track to graduate.
  2. Skills, Skills, Skills
    Providing students in rural, urban, and/or high-poverty communities with opportunities for internships or other work- and community-based learning experiences that help them develop skills for success in postsecondary education, 21st century careers, and civic life.
  3. Education Pays
    Making it easier for students and families to find and select high-quality, affordable postsecondary programs – whether colleges, universities, or career training programs – that provide good value.
  4. Finishing Faster
    Increasing the likelihood that postsecondary students complete their degrees, and decreasing the time it takes them to finish, such as by improving and speeding up remedial education.


Submissions will be judged by a panel of prominent educators and entrepreneurs who will identify the top startup submissions in three categories:

  • 6th – 8th grade students
  • 9th – 12th grade students
  • Undergraduate/ postsecondary students

Complete guidelines and entry information can be found here:

Kavli Save the World Through Science and Engineering Video Contest

February 1st, 2012

The Kavli Save the World Through Science and Engineering Video Contest is open to students in Grades 6-12. The deadline is March 1, 2012. Students make a short video (:30-:90) that shows how scientific discoveries and inventions can improve our lives and change our world, either right now or in the future. Then they enter it on and compete for cash prizes!

First prize is $2000 and a travel stipend to Washington, D.C. to the USA Science and Engineering Festival: April 28-29, Second prize is $750, Third prize is $500, and People’s Choice is $250. Winners will be honored in a special awards ceremony hosted by Bill Nye the Science Guy.

For more information, visit:

2011‑2012 SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards

October 15th, 2011

Last year we changed the technical standards to be valid for two years. These standards are the result of many hours of work from a collaboration of industry partners, subject matter experts and SkillsUSA staff who worked diligently to create a user‑friendly product. The standards provide our chapters and students with an up‑to‑date official competition guide for both the 2011 and 2012 SkillsUSA Championships. We will post changes to any of the contests on our website Contest Updates page.

The CD‑ROM package, including the standards, an information piece, a poster and 2011 contest projects, can be purchased for $19.95 through the SkillsUSA online catalog at: Contest singles cost $10.95 each and include the 2011 contest project (if available). If you purchased the two CD‑Rom package last year, you need only purchase the 2011 contest projects as a single CD for $15.95 ea.

Upon request, we are also offering a 606‑page, perfect‑bound book version for $32.95, plus shipping and handling. To purchase this printed version through the online catalog, look beneath the listing for the CD‑ROM package and locate the blue and yellow “LuLu button.” This button will take you to to place your order. To further our efforts to produce more eco‑friendly materials, we’ve chosen LuLu to deliver this on‑demand printed version. Delivery time is approximately three to five days, depending on the selected delivery option. Please know the book version of the technical standards does not contain the 2011 SkillsUSA Championships contest projects.

ACTE Video PSA Contest

September 30th, 2011

Foster Future Filmmakers: Encourage your CTE students to submit to ACTE’s video PSA contest. The winning student or team will receive $750, and the second-place student or team will receive $250. Videos should be 29 seconds in length, promote CTE and include the 2012 CTE Month logo.

PSAs must be uploaded by October 17, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. P.S.T. A broadcast-quality hard copy on DVD and required forms must be mailed to ACTE with a postmark date of October 17, 2011. Get all the rules and details at We look forward to viewing and sharing these examples of your students’ creativity!

New STEM Competition

July 30th, 2011

Do you have an exciting partnership that brings STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) talent to students and teachers in our nation’s public schools? Do you know of new, innovative programs that could contribute to this movement? Can your skills and experience help share STEM content while showing students the exciting opportunities that STEM learning enables?

In partnership with Carnegie Corporation of New York and The Opportunity Equation, Ashoka’s Changemakers is hosting a competition to unleash the talent of professionals in STEM-related fields to engage students, particularly the highest-need students, in rich STEM learning. Partnering for Excellence: Innovations in Science + Technology + Engineering + Math Education, an online collaborative competition, will spur creative ways for companies, universities and other organizations with expertise in the STEM fields to partner with the public schools that need their talent.

Ashoka’s Changemakers is looking for models that bring STEM expertise into public schools, using resources from the private and not-for-profit sectors in new ways to further student learning designed with a “long-term, part-time” approach. Compelling entries will embed shared accountability for student achievement for both the partner organization and the school in their design.

Winners are eligible for more than $150,000 in cash and in-kind prizes. Ashoka’s Changemakers is partnering with distinguished leaders — the Jhumki Basu Foundation, Alcoa Foundation, Amgen Foundation, ExxonMobil Foundation, Google, The Mind Trust, AFT Innovation Fund and Noyce Foundation—to bring great STEM talent to schools.

Submit your innovative solutions by 5 p.m. EDT on August 3, 2011. This opportunity could help improve and expand an existing STEM program, or provide start-up funding for an initiative that is only in the “Idea phase.”

For more information, visit, or if you have any questions please contact Alex Beyard at

Contest Updates

May 14th, 2011

We have posted many SkillsUSA Championships contest updates on our Web page. To view them, please visit There aren’t updates in every contest. If new information is presented about a contest, the information can be critical to a student’s competition.

We request the technical committee chairs to complete contest updates by June 1 so the students can prepare. If they do add or change anything after June 1, we have to mail (by first-class mail) the information directly to the competitors. So, after June 1, advisors should inform their students to  check their mail often.

Keep It Green Reminder

March 15th, 2011

Lowe’s and SkillsUSA want to know what you are doing to keep it green. A new contest has been established for SkillsUSA instructors to show methods/techniques/technologies used in their classrooms that provide the ability for that class to reduce in the carbon footprint left on the environment.

If you are a proactive “green” instructor implementing innovative methodologies to teach your program, go to and apply for one of six $2,500 Lowe’s awards and the chance to attend the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City this June. In addition, the six winning instructors will be asked to present their program during a SkillsUSA University session on Wednesday, June 22, 2011.

To be eligible, you must be a registered SkillsUSA professional member with an active SkillsUSA chapter. Membership for the 2010-11 school year will be verified by the national headquarters. (The name must appear on a roster for this school year.) Only one entry per SkillsUSA professional member is permitted.

Deadline is April 1. For complete details and application instructions, go to:

The Green Destination: Video Contest

January 14th, 2011

Are you looking for a creative way to help make our society a GREENER place? If so, we’ve got the contest for you. The Delmar, Cengage Learning Corporation wants to make the green destination for the building trades industry and they need your help.

Students will create and submit a video showing how they would promote this new green website to their potential customers. For complete details, visit:

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