Active Advisor News
November 2012

Update from Tim Lawrence
Work Force Ready System Website

Tim LawrenceNick Pinchuk's Blog
Nick Pinchuk, CEO and chairman of Snap-on is SkillsUSA's 2012 Champion of the Year and he is an eloquent and passionate speaker when it comes to both the importance of the skilled workforce and SkillsUSA. During the dinner, he said, in part: "We, as a nation, need to make skilled workforce training a national priority, and to make skilled careers, a national calling." He concluded his remarks by recognizing the students in the audience saying, "Meet America's future, the young men and women of SkillsUSA." There is a blog post from Nick Pinchuk supporting CTE on the NASDCTEc website at:

WorldSkills Americas Competition
Eleven members of the SkillsUSA WorldTeam will be heading to Sao Paulo, Brazil, November 12-18, 2012 to participate in the WorldSkills Americas competition to practice for the WorldSkills Competition to be held in Leipzig, Germany, in July 2013. WorldSkills Americas, in cooperation with its member countries organizes a competition every two years focused on vocational training. The first competition was held in 2010, Rio de Janeiro.

WorldSkills Americas (WSA) is a non-governmental not-for-profit organization. Its objective is to provide means for vocational education quality improvement in North America, Central America and Caribbean and South America countries, involving governments, industries, commerce and vocational education and training organizations/institutions.

The WorldSkills Americas operates in conjunction with the WorldSkills International.

Members of the SkillsUSA WorldTeam who will be competing at the WorldSkills Americas competition are

  • Autobody Repair - George Mason, Lexington Technology Center, Lexington, S.C.
  • Automobile Technology - Kieron Kohlmann, Ferris State University, Big Rapids, Mich.
  • CNC Milling - Joshua Bedell, Pinellas Technical Education Center, Clearwater, Fla.
  • CNC Turning - Ronald Olkowski, Ferris State University, Big Rapids, Mich.
  • Cabinetmaking - Daniel Berrios, Northampton Community College, Bethlehem, Pa.
  • Cooking - Matthew Lorman, North Point High School, Waldorf, Md.
  • Graphic Design Technology - Sarah Parker, Ronald Reagan High School, Pfafftown, N.C.
  • Mechatronics - Antony Costantini, The Technology Center, Fremont, Ohio
  • Mechatronics - Jarrod Nichols, The Technology Center, Fremont, Ohio
  • Plumbing and Heating - Nicholas Michalenko, Smith Vocational, Northampton, Mass.
  • Web Design - Michael Angel, Essex High School/Center for Technology, Essex, Essex Junction, Vt.

Twelve of the SkillsUSA WorldTeam technical experts will also participate.

Stay tuned. I'll let you know how the competition went in the December issue of the newsletter.

Advisor photoFree Advisor Membership Incentives Reminder
When advisors register at least 15 student members plus one or more professionals by November 15, 2012, they will receive a free copy of Accelerate - Effective Strategies to Enrich Student Learning (value: $10). This brand new resource from the SkillsUSA Educational Resources Catalog discusses adding relevance and retention to student learning. The book is designed to do just that with a philosophy centered on "learning by doing." With more than 40 teaching strategies that enhance classroom instruction, Accelerate is a compilation of interactive and student-centered activities that apply content in a practical yet effective manner. Activities are organized so you can quickly locate what you need with descriptions, instructions, closure and integration suggestions, and variations to strategy.

Also, instructors who submit a roster with 100 percent membership plus one or more professionals also will receive a SkillsUSA Program of Work calendar (value: $5.95).

Remember, the membership roster must be submitted online by November 15 to receive these free items.

2012 Awards Ceremony DVDAdvisor image
Winning a national medal at the SkillsUSA Championships is a monumental achievement. Relive the moment of glory with this DVD of the Awards Ceremony from SkillsUSA's 2012 National Leadership and Skills Conference. This is the same footage that appeared during the live Internet stream of the event and on the big screens at Kemper Arena. Some speakers and performances have been edited for copyright reasons.

The DVD includes closed captioning. To order, call 800-321-8422 or go to:

SkillsUSA offers 47 technical and employability assessments in 11 cluster areas including four co-branded assessments with ASE/AYES and five co-branded assessments with PrintED/GAERF.

System updates were released in September with new features to enhance the grade reports, certificate printing and username password reset functionality. See examples of the enhanced grade and username password reports at this link.

Free training webinars are now scheduled for the month of November. To see the scheduled dates and times, go to:

For additional information on the assessments visit the Work Force Ready System website or Patty Duncan at 703-737-0633, Ext. 1 or by email to

New Partnership with Interstate BatteriesInterstate Batteries logo
SkillsUSA is excited to announce a new partnership with Interstate Batteries and a fundraising program for local chapters. This is a great opportunity for your chapters to raise funds in partnership with a company whose mission and product align very closely with SkillsUSA.

Through this partnership, local chapters can now sell Interstate Batteries products and they will receive 50 percent of the sales. Below is the link for your chapter to sign up today. This is a great program to participate in as you seek to raise funds for district and state events and for leadership development activities and materials. For more information, go to

SkillsUSA Champions magazineSkillsUSA Champions Magazine
Have you seen the fall 2012 issue of SkillsUSA Champions? By now it should have arrived in your school. Each issue has a different lesson plan to help you share the content with your students here. The entire magazine is also available online as an e-zine which can be viewed online here.

The current issue addresses the timely topic of bullying through profiles of one national officer and a two-person competition team, and it also tells how some chapters are dealing with the problem. As is traditional with the first issue following the National Leadership and Skills Conference, gold-medal-winning chapters and the entire national officer team are highlighted, as are the finalists for SkillsUSA's advisor of the year. There's lots of additional content to motivate and inspire your members.

The fall issue is mailed to every chapter that joined SkillsUSA in the previous school year. The number of copies you receive is determined by the number of members you had at the end of the year. To ensure that your chapter receives the upcoming winter issue, register your members by November 15.

Free Chapter Management Webinar Series - Mark Your Calendars
Looking for ways to engage more members in SkillsUSA activities and programs? Need ideas on membership recruitment? Need a place to turn to for help on everything SkillsUSA related? Join us for the next Chapter Management Webinar series:

  • Membership Recruitment and Engagement
  • Electing Chapter Officers
  • Program of Work Planning and Implementation

Create a wonderful year in SkillsUSA by joining some of the nine upcoming 30-minute informational webinars that cover best practices developed from SkillsUSA advisors. The join links, phone numbers and passcodes are listed online at:

Project Ignition Grants
Project Ignition (PI), is in the driver's seat again, announcing the availability of $2,000 grants for public high schools to address teen driver safety using service-learning. In its ninth year, PI is a great extension of Celebrate My Drive and another way to interact with local high schools on safer teen driving behaviors.

Car crashes remain the leading cause of death for teens in the United States, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Young people, in partnership with teachers and communities, can change this staggering fact through Project Ignition - a student-led teen driver safety program funded by State Farm and coordinated by the National Youth Leadership Council.

Project Ignition offers grants to students and their advisors interested in creating impactful awareness campaigns focused on teen driver safety while using service-learning - a teaching method that combines meaningful community service with classroom instruction. Youth-led teams host events, form community-wide partnerships, work on local and state policy, produce public service announcements, and more.

Now through November 15, schools can apply for a grant.