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Accepting an Influential Invitation

Past SkillsUSA Officers Vanessa Sandoval (left) and Julia Abramova meet Sen. George Allen of Virginia shortly before the president's speech (inset).

SkillsUSA is fast becoming a much larger blip on the radar screens of our federal government s policy-makers.

For example, when the White House was issuing invitations to hear President Bush s recent speech on high school renewal, guess which national student organization was on the guest list? Members of SkillsUSA s national staff, along with its past national presidents Julia Abramova and Vanessa Sandoval, represented the organization at the event.

First lady Laura Bush and Margaret Spellings, later confirmed as the new U.S. secretary of education, also attended. We re not interested in mediocrity. We re interested in excellence,  the president told the audience at a Virginia high school. With the slogan SkillsUSA: Champions at Work , it s clear our organization feels the same way about career and technical education students. "

Got Standards?

The SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards 2005 2007  the book that you need if you plan to compete any time between, say, 2005 and 2007  is now available on CD-ROM. The new disc features video clips, special insider tips  for grabbing the gold, Web links to contest information and more.

Visit for more information. In fact, while you re on the website, be sure to check out the latest singles. No, SkillsUSA has not become a dating service. We re talking about Contest Singles,  featuring specifications for prior years  national contests, and ASK Singles,  with separate chapters from the Advisor s Success Kit (ASK) 2004 CD-ROM. "

SkillsUSA Motors to Motor City

National officers Peyton Holland and Blake Jackson joined SkillsUSA staff and former officer Amelia Mitchell on a trip to the Motor City   a.k.a. Detroit  as part of a goodwill tour  to automotive executives during the North American International Auto Show.

They delivered the SkillsUSA message to executives from General Motors, Daimler-Chrysler and ACDelco. Once again, our students did us proud,  said SkillsUSA Executive Director Tim Lawrence. General Motors  director of dealer service support, Tim Murray, was particularly impressed after reviewing the entire Professional Development Program and offering ideas to expand GM s reach inside SkillsUSA beyond the automotive service technician area and into other occupational programs.

They asked questions that showed how seriously they were listening to us,  said Holland, the college/postsecondary vice president. We could see how much they want to be a part of helping students be successful. 

Keeping Up with the Updates

As contest dates approach, remember to keep up with the latest updates. Stay ahead of any changes by visiting

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SkillsUSA Champions | Spring 2005 | Volume 39, No. 3
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