Active Advisor News: October 2022

Active Advisor News: October 2022

Photo of 2022 Harbor Freight Tools for Schools SkillsUSA winners

SkillsUSA Instructors Earn Big Prizes for Teaching Excellence

Harbor Freight Tools for Schools has honored 12 SkillsUSA instructors with teaching excellence awards in the 2022 Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence program. Over $1.25 million in prizes were awarded this year to 20 outstanding skilled trades teachers and teacher teams in public high schools across America, with awards shared between the winners’ skilled trades program and the individual teachers. Four registered SkillsUSA instructors won grand prize awards of $100,000 and eight others won awards of $50,000. The prize recognizes outstanding instruction in the skilled trades in U.S. public high schools and those teachers who inspire students to learn skills for life after graduation. Read more here.

SkillsUSA Members Advocate at the Washington Leadership Training Institute

More than 500 SkillsUSA students, teachers and state leaders from 29 states traveled to Washington, D.C., Sept. 17-21 to participate in the in-person Washington Leadership Training Institute (WLTI) advocacy conference. Attendees learned how to become effective leaders, gained a broader understanding of how government operates and witnessed some of the inspiring history that helped shape the United States. Members then had the opportunity to share their SkillsUSA and career and technical education experiences with elected officials. They also explored the monuments and museums of D.C. and saw firsthand some of the inspiring history that helped shape the United States. Read the full story and see the recap video and photos here.

Register by Nov. 15 for Extra Member Benefits

Becoming a professional member of SkillsUSA is one of the best ways to demonstrate to students the opportunities that membership provides. As a member benefit, professional members receive online access to

the Framework Integration Toolkit, Program of Work Toolkit, SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards, opportunities for professional development and more. Learn about all the benefits here. As a special membership incentive, teachers who register at least 15 student members plus one or more professionals by Nov. 15 will receive a complimentary copy of the SkillsUSA Member Handbook. This is the official guide to help members run successful chapters. Teachers who meet the Nov. 15 deadline will also receive a discount on this resource (buy five handbooks and get the sixth one free).  National dues for professional members are $20 plus state dues, which vary. View or download this PDF for 2022-23 dues and deadlines, and visit the registration site here.

Free Career Essentials Support for Instructors

If you are beginning your journey with SkillsUSA Career Essentials, support is available every step of the way! Instructors can call 844-875-4557 or email careeressentials@skillsusa.org for assistance with ordering Career Essentials for your students, developing an implementation plan, creating administrative accounts for new instructors, logging into your account, using the dashboard to monitor progress, learning more about the Absorb learning management system and learning about recent course revisions. If you are interested in learning more about using Career Essentials with your students to define, implement and measure the development of career-readiness skills in your classroom, register for a Career Essentials overview here.

2022-23 SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards Now Available

The SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards are the official competition guides for the SkillsUSA Championships. Newly revised for 2023, the standards include the rules for each national competition, including an overview, lists of technical skills and knowledge required, clothing and eligibility requirements, equipment lists and more. They also list the embedded academic skills for each competition in math, English and science. Rules for state and local events may vary from the national guidelines, but most state competitive events are modeled after the national technical standards. As a member benefit, SkillsUSA professional members receive digital access to the SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards when they submit membership. Join as a professional member here. Watch this video to learn how to access the technical standards.

Local Chapter Recruitment Resources are Available

Check out the SkillsUSA Recruitment Week resource hub to learn how your chapter leaders can successfully plan activities to engage potential new members. You’ll also find advisor resources to coach chapter leaders around recruitment and engaging potential new members. Holding a chapter recruitment activity is a Chapter Excellence Program Level 2 indicator, so utilizing these resources can be an important step in achieving chapter excellence.

SkillsUSA Career Essentials Revisions

Teachers asked and SkillsUSA listened! An updated version of SkillsUSA Career Essentials has now been released on SkillsUSA Absorb. Here are a few highlights of the course changes: instructors can now purchase individual units from the high school and adult curricula; the number of required activities has been reduced so instructors have more control over which projects students complete; instructors are no longer required to approve required project activities from their administrative dashboard; and instructors can choose how students submit project activities (submit printed documents, send by email or upload to a shared drive). To see the list of specific revisions, click here. For help placing an order or to ask questions, email the Customer Care Team or call 844-875-4557.

SkillsUSA Scholarships for Students

One of the greatest benefits of student membership in SkillsUSA is the opportunity to earn educational scholarships. Some scholarships are based on merit, while others are based on financial need. These are competitive opportunities, so be sure to carefully review the scholarship requirements. If selected, students must complete a SkillsUSA scholarship acceptance form, and payment is sent directly to the educational institution and applied toward the recipient’s tuition bill. To earn a scholarship, students must be registered SkillsUSA members and have paid both state and national dues for this school year. Check out the SkillsUSA scholarships and grants here. New this year, students can apply for most scholarships via a single online application.

SkillsUSA Week T-shirt Design Challenge

SkillsUSA is seeking student designs for the official T-shirt of SkillsUSA Week 2023. One design will be selected and produced by the SkillsUSA Store. The contest is open to all paid student members. Only one entry per SkillsUSA member is permitted. Designs should be appropriate for use on a red T-shirt and follow the design specifications outlined in the Challenge Guide. The deadline for submissions is Nov. 7 at 5 p.m. ET.

Participate in Virtual Industry Panels

On Wednesday, Nov. 16, SkillsUSA will host Pour the IndusTEA, an industry panel discussion specific to each career cluster that we cover! This high-energy, informative experience will connect students with business and industry panelists. We invite classrooms to attend this career-focused event to gain useful insight and information about the industries they are stepping into. Learn more and register by Nov. 2 here.

SkillsUSA Technical Fridays

Join us for “SkillsUSA Technical Fridays,” a series of virtual workshops led by industry experts to help teachers develop specific technical skills relevant to their career fields. Leave the sessions with new knowledge and skills to implement in the classroom. On Oct. 21, from 4-5 p.m. ET, offensive security consultant Kyle Boyer will discuss providing vulnerability assessment, pen-testing and red-teaming services to large organizations; helping them assess their security posture; and proactively identifying security weak points before a potential breach. Learn more about the workshops here. Workshops are free but space is limited. Register here. If you have questions, contact Karolina Belen.

A Wealth of Professional Development This Fall

Join other SkillsUSA advisors for our fall Professional Development offerings to assist you in launching the new school year. Register for all sessions at least 24 hours in advance through absorb.skillsusa.org. Learn more about all fall professional development offerings from SkillsUSA’s online training calendar.

Give Your Chapter’s Service Projects a National Spotlight

SkillsUSA is on the lookout for local community service project stories to publish in the Spotlight section of our SkillsUSA Champions digital hub. If your chapter has completed a project for your community or plans to complete one this school year, please email information and photos to editors Jane Short and Hayley Uffelman, and one of them will reach out to you. This is a great assignment for a local chapter reporter. Any feature story leads are also appreciated.

It’s Not Too Late to Support the Trades in Fashion

SkillsUSA has once again teamed up with Tractor Supply Company (TSC) and Carhartt for a “Support the Trades” campaign, designed to raise awareness of the skilled trades while helping SkillsUSA close the skilled trades gap. Carhartt and TSC are offering an expanded “Support the Trades” line of shirts and hats designed by Carhartt, with a portion of the proceeds being donated to SkillsUSA! The exclusive T-shirts and hats for women and men are now available at Tractor Supply Online or your local TSC store. Check out this promotional video and follow the campaign on SkillsUSA’s social media this fall. This campaign ends soon so order your shirts now.

ACTE Webinars Can Help to Integrate IAED into Your Classroom

ACTE offers webinars to support CTE Educators with quality professional learning, including a series of Inclusion, Access, Equity, and Diversity (IAED) webinars that focus on supporting marginalized groups of students in CTE. Register and join these webinars live or catch the replay of any of the previous presentations here. The conversations are timely and support high quality teaching practices within the classroom, as well as the SkillsUSA Framework. Coming up on Oct. 20, educators will discuss how to ensure accessibility for students with disabilities.

Want to Become an Affiliate Site for Earning a Google Career Certificate?

SkillsUSA, in partnership with Jobs for the Future (JFF), is looking for affiliate sites interested in offering Google Career Certificates to their learners as part of an initiative to help underrepresented populations enter the high-demand tech field. Google Career Certificates provide job seekers with access to in-demand skills through job training without the need for a college degree or prior experience. To participate, learners must be high school seniors or older. Participating sites will receive free licenses to the Coursera-hosted online curriculum. Learners who complete a certificate will also gain access to a variety of career resources, including simulated interviews, a resume builder, coaching sessions with a local recruiter, and a job search platform that links certificate completers to employers in Google’s hiring consortium. SkillsUSA sites that may be a good fit for this opportunity should have the capacity to develop and implement programming that supports learners to successfully complete the online courses and assists them with job placement. If you would like to participate, fill out this Google form.

Apply Now for ACTE Teacher and Lifetime Achievement Awards

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) is still seeking nominations for the National Trade and Industrial Education Division Awards to be presented during the annual CareerTech VISION conference. This year’s conference will be held Nov. 30 – Dec. 3 in Las Vegas. The deadline for nominations has been extended to Nov. 1. Qualified individuals may be nominated for Teacher of the Year, New Teacher of the Year or Lifetime Achievement, and you may nominate yourself. (If you nominate someone else, please be sure to notify the nominee.) Click here to make nominations. For conference information, visit ACTE CareerTech VISION 2022.

Be Part of the Solution to Prevent Hunger

The Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning has introduced “Explore.Act.Tell,” a free program  funded by the Albertsons Companies Foundation Nourishing Neighbors Program that teaches students in grades 6-12 to become aware of food insecurity issues in their neighborhoods and learn to advocate for community involvement. A series of activities helps students learn about the issues surrounding hunger and food insecurity to develop skills they will use to implement a service project and tell their story in the challenge. Learn more about Explore.Act.Tell here.

National Apprenticeship Week in November

This year’s National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) is Nov. 14-20. This national celebration, established by the U.S. Department of Labor, brings together business leaders, career seekers, labor, apprentices, educational institutions and others to showcase the positive impact apprenticeship programs have on addressing the skills gap and preparing the American workforce for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Join the celebration by hosting an event — such as an apprenticeship graduation, business open house, high school career fair, skills competition or industry roundtable — or submit a proclamation supporting NAW and apprenticeship. Learn more about NAW.


Country Meats Can Help with Fundraising

Here is an idea for a fundraiser that’s both easy and delicious. Country Meats offers 12+ flavors of delicious smoked snack sticks, and when sold for $1.50 each, will earn your chapter 50% profit. They also offer free samples so you can taste the quality before ordering. Use the code 10OffNew at checkout to save an additional 10% off your order. Visit Country Meats or call 1-800-277-8989 for more information.