Active Advisor News: March 2023

Active Advisor News: March 2023

a group of students

Learn to Leverage “The SkillsUSA Advantage” Report

Join other advisors and stakeholders on March 21 at 3:30 p.m. ET for a webinar on the new “SkillsUSA Advantage” report, which highlights how SkillsUSA experiences create purpose, passion and skill in every student. SkillsUSA Executive Director Chelle Travis and Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Ricardo Romanillos will discuss the report’s findings that SkillsUSA members consistently outperform peers who are not enrolled in career and technical student organizations (CTSOs). Attendees will receive resources, including two digital reports and a PowerPoint deck to help you share this information with school administrators, community leaders and others as you advocate for SkillsUSA and career and technical education. Register by March 19 and participate in the session to be eligible for door prizes.

U.S. Presidential Scholar Candidates Announced

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program recognizes and honors some of our nation’s distinguished graduating high school seniors, including those who demonstrate accomplishment in career and technical education. Each year, up to 161 students are named as presidential scholars. The process begins with identifying candidates, who must then submit further information. Finalists will be announced later this spring. See the list of the 2023 candidates here.

Focus Students on Safety

The CareerSafe National Youth Safety Video Contest challenges students to create a two-minute video demonstrating workplace safety. Send submissions to CareerSafe by April 30. The winning students will receive a SkillsUSA prize pack and a scholarship of up to $2,500, and the winning school will receive a prize of up to $5,000. For more information and to submit your entry, visit the CareerSafe website.

College Cable Grants from Lowe’s

The Lowe’s Foundation has launched Cable Grants: a commitment to preparing the next generation of skilled tradespeople. Through the Cable Grants program, the Lowe’s Foundation will provide $50 million over the next five years to community and technical colleges and community-based nonprofit organizations. Those funds will help prepare 50,000 people for skilled trades careers. This program will provide grantees with funding for two years, helping develop a community of skilled tradespeople. Lowe’s is looking for community and technical colleges working to increase the number of young and diverse people in the workforce, especially from underrepresented and rural communities. Lowe’s is currently accepting unrestricted grant applications from community and technical colleges through April 10For more information about the Lowe’s Cable Grants program and to apply go here. Informational webinars with the newly appointed Lowe’s Foundation Director Betsy Conway will be held by Lowe’s on March 9 and March 22.

NLSC 2023 Courtesy Corps Members

Looking for a way to participate in the 2023 National Leadership & Skills Conference in a big way? SkillsUSA needs 120 or more National Courtesy Corps (NCC) members to support the biggest event on the SkillsUSA calendar. This much-appreciated group supports the technical committees and the overall conference experience, and it’s a great way for students to network with industry partners and SkillsUSA students from across the nation. NCC members receive free registration plus housing, local transportation, meals and entertainment. For eligibility requirements and more, visit the National Courtesy Corps web page. For the name and address of your state SkillsUSA director, go here. For questions, contact Tracy Whitehead. The deadline for nominations is May 16.

The SkillsUSA Store — NEW Red Kap Uniform Line

The SkillsUSA Store is excited to announce the addition of Red Kap to the SkillsUSA uniform line. There are five pieces in this line that are approved replacements for the discontinued Carhartt and Dickies pieces. The new Red Kap pieces are: Khaki Work Pants, Navy Work Pants, Khaki Short Sleeve Work Shirt, 100% Cotton Welding Pants and 100% Cotton Long Sleeve Welding Shirt. While the existing Carhartt and Dickies Uniform separates have been discontinued, inventory is available for purchase until stock is depleted. All of the affected pieces do have a note in the online store product descriptions linking directly to all Red Kap replacements. Shop all pieces now in the Competition Apparel category on the SkillsUSA online store.

Seeking Musical Talent to Perform National Anthem at NLSC

Do you have a musical gift to share with the SkillsUSA community? Members can apply to perform the national anthem at the opening session of SkillsUSA’s National Leadership & Skills Conference this June. The chosen performer will be offered complimentary conference registration if their sole purpose of attendance is to perform the national anthem. Apply here by 5 p.m. ET on Friday, April 28. For questions, contact Joey Baker.

Press Releases for State Conference Participants

New on the SkillsUSA Advocacy site is a press release template for state conference participants and others to share competition results with local media. Parents, instructors, students or anyone can send emails. Please spread the word about this important tool at your state conferences. For questions, email Jane Short.

Plan Now for SkillsUSA National Signing Day on May 4

On May 4, SkillsUSA National Signing Day will celebrate high school seniors and college/postsecondary students who have chosen to pursue careers as professionals in the skilled trades. SkillsUSA chapters are encouraged to host a Signing Day event and invite business partners, school administrators, teachers, elected officials, SkillsUSA alumni, family and friends to honor graduating seniors as they sign “letters of intent” for a job offer, apprenticeship or advanced technical training. Early bird registration opens March 13 through April 3, and registration closes April 21.

National Signing Day prize application-based opportunities:   

  • Students can apply for a $1,000 scholarship (25 to be awarded during the March 13-April 3 application period). The scholarship application is available here.
  • Signing Day supply bundles valued at $500 will be awarded to 10 schools (schools must register five or more students and complete the supply bundle application during the March 13-April 3 timeframe to be eligible).
  • Signing Day school grants of $250 will be awarded to 50 schools to enhance their event (schools must register five or more students to be eligible). The Signing Day school grant application will be available here by March 13.

All registered chapters available opportunities (must register by April 3 to be eligible):

  • The first 50 chapters that register five or more students will receive a Signing Day Welcome package including a poster, 35 certificates and sleeves and a vinyl NSD podium sign and 35 Signing Day certificates with sleeves.
  • Ten schools will receive a large step-and-repeat banners and a tablecloth with the SkillsUSA logo, the Signing Day logo and the school’s name will be given away to 10 schools (register five or more students to be eligible).

Early registrant opportunities:

  • First 500 registrants receive Signing Day baseball caps.
  • First 250 advisors who register five or more students receive a $50 Lowe’s gift card.
  • Registrants will receive Signing Day table runners (while supplies last).

Advisors, a digital Signing Day toolkit to help plan your event and details on how to apply for these incentives are posted on the Signing Day webpage.

One Application for SkillsUSA Scholarships

SkillsUSA students can now apply for multiple scholarships by completing just one SkillsUSA scholarship application. Most scholarships are available to both high school and college/postsecondary members. Eligibility criteria for each scholarship is noted on the application so that students know which ones they can receive. The SkillsUSA scholarship application is open until April 1. Separately, SkillsUSA students can apply for the Sharon Melton Myers Scholarship until April 1 or the Student Research Foundation (SRF) Community Contribution Scholarship until July 26. For scholarship resources and tips on how to submit a quality application, visit the scholarships page on the website. If you have questions, contact Megan Flinn.

Earn Recognition and Presidential Honors

SkillsUSA will recognize advisors, students and registered alumni for their community service through the President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA). To qualify, SkillsUSA members must submit a record of their service hours. With SkillsUSA’s focus on community service, you may have already met the requirements. For details on how to apply, visit the website. Applications must be received by April 1 for recognition this year.

SkillsUSA National Officer Candidates Sought

Becoming a SkillsUSA national officer is the ultimate personal growth and student leadership experience and the 2023-24 National Officer Program Guide and application are now available. Before filling out the application, please review the guide, as it has a wealth of information on the certifications and Career Essentials coursework candidates must complete before applying. All national officer applications are due by June 1 at 6 p.m. ET.

SkillsUSA Educational Resources to Meet Your Needs

For educational resources that spark interest and engage chapter members, check out the SkillsUSA online educational resource store. Here are a few highlights:

  • Framework Resources: Ignite ($9.95) equips you with 68 bellringers (startup tasks) to engage students with career readiness topics that tie to the SkillsUSA Framework. Post a bellringer before class starts and discuss the task and its’ relationship to school, SkillsUSA and the workplace.·
  • Leadership and Personal Growth: Leveraging Your Leadership ($4.95) Newly updated with a focus on workplace communication, resume writing and job interviewing.
  • SkillsUSA Championships: Job Skill Demonstration Coaching Guide ($14.95) This coaching guide is for the Job Skill Demonstration contest. Coaching guides are also available for Prepared Speech and the Career Pathways Showcase contests.  In addition to the educational resources, you can also find posters, lapel pins, “Why SkillsUSA?” student and teacher brochures, Framework Thank-You cards and more.

Are You a “Maker and Fixer?” Snap-on Wants to Spotlight and Reward You 

SkillsUSA industry partner Snap-on is shining a spotlight on the Makers and Fixers who keep the world moving. They seek stories about skilled people who work with their hands in the essential industries that focus on transportation — in the air, in the automotive shops or on the roads and rails. Future, past or present Makers and Fixers are invited to share their personal stories or nominate someone they admire. To share your story, visit the Share Your Story page, write about yourself and upload a few photos of you working on a project. Follow @MakersandFixers on Instagram to see if your story is shared. All eligible stories are entered into a drawing, and two stories are picked each month to win a prize valued up to $600. Visit the official rules for more information.

Meet Our International Bronze Medalist in Welding

Our latest article on the SkillsUSA Champions digital hub features Jordan Packer, our recent WorldSkills USA bronze medalist in Welding. Jordan was the first welding medalist for the United States at the WorldSkills Competition in a decade, and his point totals put him just 1% away from the gold. In the article, he shares some great philosophies learned in SkillsUSA that helped him achieve this milestone in his career.