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A New Week of Champions Set to Begin

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This year's NLSC will feature yet another first: a free outdoor concert right after the Opening Ceremony. Go to to get all the details.

Imagine: The lights in the cavernous arena dim as a deafening cheer erupts from the thousands in attendance. People from every social background — yet all sharing a common bond, a common purpose — join together to celebrate each other’s accomplishments, past and future.

Multicolored lights flash across the stage as driving music pulsates from the enormous sound system. Messages of inspiration are delivered, smiles are coaxed, even a few tears are shed. And all this just describes the Opening Ceremony of the National Leadership and Skills Conference, otherwise known as SkillsUSA’s “Week of Champions.”

From intensive leadership training to fun-filled social events, from networking opportunities to the chance to earn the gold in competition, the NLSC shouldn’t just be imagined; it should be — it needs to be — experienced. Find out everything about this year’s event — the biggest ever — at

Can't Miss Career Fair

Don’t miss this year’s Career Fair, held June 22–24 in conjunction with the National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City, Mo.

Sponsored by The Home Depot, Career Fair offers great networking opportunities for those looking for employment and those looking for those looking for employment. (Got that?) Multitudes of companies will be represented, each one eager to hire what business and industry so often refers to as “the best and the brightest”: SkillsUSA students.

Exhibit booths will be clearly marked “Career Fair” and can be found in Lobby 200 and 300 of that famous Kansas City edifice (at least for SkillsUSA members), Bartle Hall.

Make Your Career Safe This Summer

As another school year winds down, students across the country are gearing up for summer jobs, many of them concerned with only two things: “How much will I make?” and “What will I spend it on?” CareerSafe and SkillsUSA are encouraging students to keep something else in mind, too: “How can I stay safe on the job?”

The statistics bear repeating: One young worker dies on the job every five days. More than 200,000 young workers are injured on the job annually, and 70,000 of these require emergency room treatment. In fact, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that younger workers have the highest rates of work-related deaths, injuries and illnesses.

CareerSafe, through a Web-based course, gives high school and college students the fundamental safety knowledge they’ll need in the workplace, and it’s still not too late to take advantage of this great program before you start your summer job.

An individual or entire classroom can sign up and complete the 10-module CareerSafe course. Those who complete the program receive a wallet card from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Believe it or not, that card — which never expires — will give you the edge in getting or keeping a job; it demonstrates that you took the initiative to educate yourself on the fundamentals of workplace safety. It may even save you a trip to the emergency room.

This $12 program qualifies for the application of Perkins funds, and for each student that registers, $1 will be donated to the SkillsUSA Youth Development Foundation. To find out more, visit

Join the Academy

“Star Trek” has Starfleet Academy. “Star Wars” has the Jedi Academy. The armed forces have the Air Force and Naval Academies. And the movie industry has the Academy Awards (OK, maybe that one doesn’t quite fit).

But there’s another academy in town: SkillsUSA’s Leadership Development Academy (LDA), where advisors learn how to get the best out of their students and students learn and practice leadership skills while participating in a wide variety of workshops and activities. The next LDA will be held July 24–28 in Leesburg, Va. To find out how you can be a part of this invaluable training opportunity, visit

A Champion's Car for a Champion Organization

You don’t have to be a NASCAR fan to appreciate the roar of an engine as it propels a car past the 200 mph mark and across the finish line. You also don’t have to be a NASCAR fan to appreciate the fact that champion racer Matt Kenseth has featured the mighty SkillsUSA logo on the back of his No. 17 DeWALT-sponsored Ford race car.

And no, you don’t even have to be a NASCAR fan to own the new die-cast collectible model of that very car, the one that just ran in the Daytona 500 and finished first in the Subway 400 and UAW-Daimler-Chrysler 400.

Order your car at Proceeds will benefit SkillsUSA programs. Nope, you don’t have to be a NASCAR fan to do any of this stuff. But it doesn’t hurt.

Chapters Carry the Standards in New Program

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The online, interactive program helps instructors track their students' growth while meeting local and state requirements for standards.

In its first full year of implementation, SkillsUSA’s Chapter Standards Program is already a success. At least 175 locations have signed on to help every student member learn, improve as an individual and prepare for employment.

The online, interactive program helps instructors track their students’ growth while meeting local and state requirements for standards. Those who enroll receive special recognition and benefits from SkillsUSA, including a certificate, a decal for display in their classrooms, and educational resources and materials.

And, it’s free. To tour the program, visit and click on the “Chapter Standards” link.

Participants 2003-2004

Alabama: William Cunningham, Earnest Pruett Center of Technology, Hollywood; Ed Speigner, Enterprise High School, Enterprise

Alaska: Lynn Kile, King Career Center, Anchorage

Arizona: Marty Benton, East Valley Institute of Technology, Mesa; Joann Olson, Kingman High School, Kingman; Gary Townsley, Cactus High School, Glendale

Arkansas: Kay Anthony, National Park Community College, Hot Springs; Patrick Davis, Marion High School, Marion; Callie Dunavin, Mid-South Community College Technical Center, Batesville; Verna Seawood, Crowley’s Ridge Technical Institute, Forrest City

California: Sandy Neal, Mission Trails Regional Occupational Center, Salinas; Kathleen Nicholson, El Camino Real, Woodland Hills; Nickcole Paine, Lassen High School, Susanville; Enrique Reyes, Harbor Occupational Center, San Pedro

Colorado: Jeff Jeffers, T.H. Pickens Tech, Aurora; Matt Sinclair, Del Norte High School, Del Norte

Connecticut: Charles Caisse, Norwich Tech, Norwich

Florida: Deborah Kenn, Lyman High School, Longwood; Vicky Laporte, Atlantic Technical Center Magnet High School, Coconut Creek; Jorge Sanchez, Southwest High School, Miami

Georgia: Milton Bearden, Manchester High School, Pine Mountain Valley; Tony Criswell, South Eastern Technical College, Vidalia; Jeff Little, West Hall High School, Oakwood; Chris Vaden, Washington County High School, Sandersville; William Ward, McEachern High School, Powder Springs

Idaho: Debbie Brumley, Capital High School, Boise; Susan McClintock, SkillsUSA Idaho association director, Eagle; Rachel Montgomery, Professional-Technical Education Center, Boise

Illinois: Chris Budzynski, Illinois state officers, Aurora; Kenneth Echternach, Homewood-Flossmoor High School, Flossmoor; Joyce Icenogle, Oak Lawn High School, Oak Lawn; Cathy Roberts, Bloomington Area Vocational Center, Bloomington

Indiana: Steve Greene and Amy Vice, C.A. Prosser School of Technology, New Albany; Kay Maple, Heartland Career Center, Wabash; Scott Miller, Area Career Center, Hammond; Donald Payne, Southeastern Career Center, Osgood; Wilbur Slabach, West Noble High School, Ligonier

Kansas: Rick Anderson, Kaw Area Technical School, Kansas City; Robert Gibbens, North Central Kansas Technical College, Beloit; Deb Hargrove, Arkansas City High School, Arkansas City; Warren Milks, Labette County High School, Altamont; Nancy Pinard, Sedan High School, Sedan

Kentucky: Staci Davis, Southern Middle School, Lexington; Robert Lee, Ballard County Career and Technical Center, Barlow

Louisiana: Louis Blanchard, Louisiana Technical College/Florida Priches Campus, Greensburg; Debra Bothel, Caddo Career and Technology Center, Shreveport; Ken Egan, Huey P. Long Technical Institute, Winnfield; Suzanne Guillory, Louisiana Technical College/Gulf Area Campus, Abbeville; Mona Sepulvado and Eylda G. Thaxton, Louisiana Technical College/Sabine Valley Campus, Many

Maine: Harold Casey, Hancock County Technical Center, Ellsworth; Paul Sirois, Oxford Hills Technical School, Norway

Maryland: Thelma Moore, Center of Applied Technology South, Edgewater; James Richter, Carroll County Public Schools, Westminster; Linda Snyder, Center for Career and Technical Education, Cumberland

Massachusetts: Mark Buttrick, Framingham State College, Attleboro; Gail Diotte, Upper Cape Regional Tech, Bourne; Jeffrey Nystrom, Bristol-Plymouth Regional Tech School, Taunton

Michigan: James Pitts, Lansing Community College, Lansing

Minnesota: Liz Madsen, South Central Technical College, North Mankato

Mississippi: Karen Kirk, A. P. Fatherree Vocational High School, Laurel

Missouri: Steve Balough, South Central Career Center, West Plains; Justin Barton, Jefferson College Area Technical School, Hillsboro; Gregory Bauer, Clinton Technical School, Clinton; Paul Light, SkillsUSA Missouri association director, Jefferson City; Amanda Peeples, State Fair Career and Technology Center, Sedalia; Anthony Wood-side, South Technical High School, Fenton

Montana: Thomas McLaren, Anaconda High School, Anaconda

Nebraska: William Dodson, Columbus High School, Columbus; Rick Henderson, Nebraska Department of Education, Lincoln; Calvin Rollmann, Holdrege High School, Holdrege

Nevada: Barbara Kirkland, Area Technical Trade Center, North Las Vegas

New Hampshire: Scott Lawlor, Manchester School of Technology, Manchester

New Jersey: Thomas Cathers Sr., Monmouth County Vocational School District, Aberdeen; Michael Esola, Cranford High School, Cranford; Robert Lezinski, Hudson County Schools of Technology, North Bergen; Roger Osgood, Elizabeth High School Edison House, Elizabeth; Julie Shipley, Somerset County Vocational High School, Bridgewater

New Mexico: Mary Anderson, Deming High School, Deming; Tania Lovato, Los Lunas Career Academy, Bernalillo

New York: Jeffrey Block, Alfred E. Smith High School, Bronx; Joe Boshart and Katrina Fiorenza, H.G. Sackett Technical Center, Glenfield; Mary Lynne Bridger, Herkimer County BOCES, Herkimer; Giovanni Chiarelli, Milliken Technical Center, Oakdale; Mary Falcone, Genesse Valley BOCES, Batavia; Jennifer Pavio, Finger Lakes Technical Career Center, Stanley; Cesar Payne, Automotive High School, Brooklyn; Michelle Pristina, Milliken Tech Center, Oakdale; Roy Scarlett, Gerald R. Claps Career and Technical Center, Commack; Steven Williams, High School of Graphic Communication Arts, New York

North Carolina: Terence Drummond, Southern High School, Durham

North Dakota: Lee Friese, Bismarck State College, Bismarck

Ohio: Laurie Barley, Madison Comprehensive High School, Mansfield; Diana Lintala-Raming, Buckeye Hills Career Center, Rio Grande; Edward Ryan, Pickaway-Ross Joint Vocational School, Chillicothe; Edward Brewer, Cuyahoga Valley Career Center, Brecksville; Tim Dean, Madison Comprehensive High School, Mansfield

Oklahoma: Shane Bruce, Central Oklahoma Technology Center, Drumright; Erik Brummal, Central Oklahoma Technology Center, Sapulpa; Alan Snider, Western Technology, Burns Flat

Pennsylvania: Troy Madden, Center for Technical Studies, Glenside; Patty Palo, Erie County Technical School, Erie; Sharon Schaffer, Bethlehem AVTS, Bethlehem

Rhode Island: Joseph Fantozzi, Regional Career and Technical Center at Coventry High School, Coventry; Melissa McCulloch, New England Institute of Technology, Warwick

South Carolina: Danny Fahey, B.J. Skelton Career Center, Easley; James Miller, J. Harley Bonds Career Center, Greer; David Sloan, R.D. Anderson Area Technical Center, Moore

Tennessee: Tom Beesley, Springfield High School, Springfield; Carolyn Brown, Oakhaven High School, Memphis; Frank Cathey, Lavergne High School, Rockvale; Vernon Chandler, North Knox Technology Center, Knoxville; Joey Christian, Dobyns-Bennett, Kingsport; Utica Cunningham, Kingsbury Career Technology Center, Memphis; Lisa Dunn, Soddy Daisy High School, Soddy Daisy; Martha Dyer, Cookeville High School, Cookeville; Curtis Gillespie, Liberty Technology Magnet High, Humboldt; Michael Harris, Sequoyah Technology Center, Soddy Daisy; Thomas Kerns, Gibbs High School, Knoxville; Ronald King, Southwest Career and Technology Center, Memphis; Liry Maples, Whitehaven High School, Memphis; Bruce McClure, White House High School, White House; Russell McKnight, Crockett County High School, Alamo; Janie Merritt, Harrison Bay Technology Center, Ooltewah; Carolyn Rigsby, Tri-County Vocational School, Pleasant Shade; Harvey Rimmer, Chester County High School, Henderson; John Tipton, Rockwood High School, Rockwood; Gary Watts, Humphreys County Vocational Center, New Johnsonville

Texas: Kevin Berrigan, Oakridge High School, Conroe; David Castillo, San Jacinto College, Pasadena; Mike Coler, Texas State Technical College, Sweetwater; Janet Conner, SkillsUSA Texas association/secondary, Mabank; Linda Holcombe, Texas Industrial Vocational Association, Austin; James Hyatt, Paris High School, Paris; Lou Edna Musquiz, Del Rio High School, Del Rio; Mary Lou Ponce, James Pace High School, Brownsville; Kenny Price, Alief Elsik High School, Houston; Bill Richardson, Jacksboro High School, Jacksboro; Nancy Sill, Killeen ISD, Killeen; Shelly Touchstone, Seminole High School, Seminole

U.S. Virgin Islands: Anton Doos, St. Croix Vocational School, Kingshill, St. Croix

Virginia: Sandra Hawk, Buckingham Vocational Center, Buckingham; Becky Howell, Galax High School, Galax; Tim McLeod, Spotsylvania Career and Technical Center, Spotsylvania; Harold Mullins, Fauquier High School, Warrenton; Carolyn Powell, Kempsville High School, Virginia Beach

Washington: Brett Alsman, Stephanie Cook and Kirk Vangelder, Clark County Skills Center, Vancouver; Kathleen Dearborn, Northwest Anderson, Bothell; Kenny Jensen, Washougal High School, Washougal; Keith Kuniyasu, River Ridge High School, Lacey; Norma Loree, New Market Vocational Skills Center, Tumwater; Christopher Marquez, Decatur High School, Federal Way

West Virginia: Alisa Cushwa, James Rumsey Technical Institute, Martinsburg; Anne Meadows, Academy Of Careers and Technology, Beckley; Louise Walsh, Wyoming County Career and Technical Center, Blue Jay

Wisconsin: Troy Hassman, Pulaski High School, Pulaski; Tim Schmitz, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, Green Bay

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SkillsUSA Champions | Summer 2004 | Volume 38, No. 4
Copyright ©2004 SkillsUSA. All rights reserved.