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Competition Descriptions

The following are brief descriptions for all of the SkillsUSA Championships competitions. The official rules for each event are found in the SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards. For those competitions that are too new for inclusion in the SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards, there is a link at the end of each description.

3D Visualization and Animation

(Team of 2) The world of 3D is rapidly expanding, and career opportunities exist in a wide range of fields, including architecture, games, product and industrial design, civil engineering, and film and television animation. This competition allows students to step into a real-world 3D production environment where creative output must be accomplished within specific timeframes, resources and design constraints. This is a two-person team event and includes a preliminary written exam. Competitors must produce high quality images and an animated short subject using 3D computer-generated images. Students are evaluated on their technical knowledge, production skills and creative abilities, including visual development and storyboarding. Competitors can also interface with and get feedback from high-profile judges with successful careers in 3D visualization and animation.

Action Skills

This competition requires a five- to seven-minute demonstration of an occupational skill in an area in which a student is training. Competitors use examples, experiments, displays or practical operations to clearly explain their skills using competitor-prepared visual aids. A letter from the appropriate school official on school letterhead stating that the competitor is classified under the provisions of Public Law 105-17, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 1997, is required for participation.

Additive Manufacturing

(Team of 2) Additive manufacturing, also known as 3D Printing, embraces a wide range of materials and derivative processes to build parts suitable for end-use service. The virtually unlimited design freedom enabled by additive manufacturing allows the creation of shapes and the integration of feature and function that previously required sub-assemblies. Employment opportunities for design engineers are growing as the industry adopts additive manufacturing methods and applies the practice to various parts of their business from prototyping to end use parts.

Advertising Design

This competition tests technical skills and creative aptitude as though competitors worked for an ad agency. In addition to a written test, competitors will recreate a provided advertisement on the computer. Competitors are judged on their accuracy, proficiency with industry software and ability to meet a deadline. Competitors also compete in a creative portion of the competition. The creative portion involves the application of creative thinking and a design challenge. Layout, drawing and illustration skills are used, as well as the ability to create vibrant, effective designs using the computer.

American Spirit (includes Middle School)

(Team of 3) This is a professional portfolio competition documenting SkillsUSA chapters’ community service; patriotism and citizenship; and promotion of career and technical education projects that demonstrate a belief in the American way of life and the purposes of SkillsUSA.

Architectural Drafting

Competitors will use their drafting skills to solve an architectural problem. The problem includes a written test, a hand sketch, and drawings that are either computer-generated or board drafted. If board drafting, competitors must bring all the necessary equipment. The competition tests the competitors’ problem-solving abilities, not simply CAD skills.

Audio/Radio Production

(Team of 2) Students will produce (plan, write, voice, record, edit and render) up to a three-minute radio production such as a PSA, sound rich/NPR style news story or a sound and interview news story. A 60-second streaming radio infomercial and 30-second ad spot will be produced and inserted into the production. The complete production requires students to demonstrate their ability to plan a project that meets a specific prompt and run time; and to gather, edit and mix a variety of audio sources. Competitors must render their completed project to a specified audio file format.

Automated Manufacturing Technology

(Team of 3) The competition evaluates teams for employment in integrated manufacturing technology fields of computer aided drafting/design (CAD), computer aided manufacturing (CAM), and computer numerical controlled machining (CNC). CAD operators construct the part geometry; the CAM operator generates the tool paths; and the CNC operator sets up and machines the part.

Automotive Maintenance and Light Repair (High School only)

The competition is consistent with the auto maintenance and light repair task list outlined in guidelines published by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and the ASE Education Foundation at: www.aseeducationfoundation.org. Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform jobs or skills selected from the standards mentioned above as determined by the SkillsUSA Championships Technical Committee.

Automotive Refinishing Technology

Competitors demonstrate the ability to perform skills based on the task list outlined by the National Institute for Automotive Excellence (ASE) and the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF). The competition includes a series of workstations to assess skills in surface preparation, spray gun operation, paint mixing, matching and applying, solving paint applications problems, determining finish defects with an understanding of causes and cures, masking, and utilizing safety precautions. Competitors also complete an interview and an ASE written exam. The overall appearance of the finished products, speed and proper safety practices is judged.

Automotive Service Technology

The competition is consistent with the automobile technician task list outlined in guidelines published by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and the ASE Education Foundation at: www.aseeducationfoundation.org. Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform jobs or skills selected from the standards mentioned above as determined by the SkillsUSA Championships technical committee.

Aviation Maintenance Technology

Competitors perform 12 tasks that represent the types of maintenance they will handle in the aircraft industry. The competition scope is consistent with the general, airframe and powerplant maintenance technician certification guide published by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Baking and Pastry Arts (formerly known as Commercial Baking)

Competitors are challenged to meet production and quality standards expected by industry. The competition includes a written examination and practical exercises. Competitors demonstrate their knowledge and skills through scaling, mixing, preparing and baking eight products. The products include breads, rolls, cookies, and assorted pastries. The student must also demonstrate their cake decorating skills. The competitor must work efficiently to produce quality products in a job-like setting.

Barbering

The competition is defined by industry standards as identified by the SkillsUSA Barbering technical committee and the National Barbering Association. The competition is divided into four separate skill performance tasks including haircutting, hair styling, hair color, beard design and coloring. Creativity is assessed in the creative cut and beard design, while haircutting is evaluated in the recreation of men’s haircuts from a photograph. The competition will include an interview which consists of creating a mini resume with completion of a job application and actual interview.

Basic Health Care Skills (High School only)

Competitors demonstrate their knowledge and ability to perform entry-level procedures or skills based on the following list of core standards: academic foundations, communication skills, career opportunity concepts and systems, employability and teamworking, ethical and legal issues and safety practices. Performance will be evaluated through various stations involving skills testing as well as written and verbal assessments.

Building Maintenance

Students demonstrate competencies related to the building maintenance trade. These areas will include, but are not limited to, carpet care, office and restroom cleaning, floor care and liquid measurement. Because the competition is a national event, competitors are expected to compete in a high level of mastery. A letter from the appropriate school official on school letterhead stating that the competitor is classified under the provisions of Public Law 105-17, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 1997, is required for participation.

Cabinetmaking

Competitors build a small cabinet or piece of furniture from the materials and drawings supplied. Competitors are expected to read the drawings, lay out, create cut list, and cut the parts using a variety of tools including, but not limited to: table saw, miter saw, drill, hinge boring machine and various hand tools. The parts must be accurately assembled, sanded and adjusted to tolerances specified by the judges.

Career Pathways Showcase

(Team of 3) Student teams use their course of study as the basis of a project that will benefit their class, school, community or industry. The project must highlight an aspect of their career cluster training. Upon completion of the project, the students will develop a display and use it within the community to explain their training and project. This competition will judge mastery of their training, its application, the project’s benefit to their community, and display and presentation techniques.

Carpentry

Competitors frame walls using wood and/or steel studs, cut and install rafters, gable end overhangs, fascia board and soffit installation, install sheathing and/or exterior siding and trim. Demonstration of knowledge of stair construction is required. Competitors will be judged on accuracy, ability to read and interpret blueprints, workmanship, safety and the proper use of tools, equipment and materials.

Chapter Business Procedure

(Team of 6) Student teams demonstrate knowledge of parliamentary procedure in both a written exam and a team demonstration. The written exam covers questions related to materials found in Robert’s Rules of Order—Newly Revised. During the presentation, the team will demonstrate the running of a typical business meeting using a standard order of business. During the presentation, the team must properly insert into the order of business the secretary’s minutes, treasurer’s report and business items identified by the technical committee. In addition to the debate and transaction of the business items, teams will also properly demonstrate at least six different parliamentary procedure motions, including at least one of each of the following: main, privileged, subsidiary, incidental and motions that bring back issues to the floor. Minutes of the demonstration will be read by the secretary upon completion of the demonstration.

Chapter Display

(Team of 3) SkillsUSA student members build a three-dimensional display that articulates the annual SkillsUSA competition theme. The members of the chapter build the display and three students present information about the display during a presentation and interview with judges.

CNC 2-Axis Turning Programmer (formerly known as CNC Turning Specialist)

This competition evaluates each competitor’s ability to independently plan and program jobs for CNC (Computer Numerical Control) turning centers and provide instructions for operators to execute. Competitors program part features and generate NC code using CAM software, troubleshoot G-code programming errors, interpret prints (including geometric dimensioning and tolerancing or GD&T), measure/gauge parts, and demonstrate their theoretical knowledge of CNC turning center configuration, setup, and operation.

CNC 3-Axis Milling Programmer (formerly known as CNC Milling Specialist)

This competition evaluates each competitor’s ability to independently plan and program jobs for CNC (Computer Numerical Control) milling machines and provide instructions for operators to execute. Competitors program part features and generate NC code using CAM software, troubleshoot G-code programming errors, interpret prints (including geometric dimensioning and tolerancing or GD&T), measure/gauge parts, and demonstrate their theoretical knowledge of CNC milling machine configuration, setup, and operation.

CNC 5 Axis Milling Programmer (Demonstration Contest)

This competition evaluates each competitor’s ability to independently plan and program jobs for 5-Axis CNC (Computer Numerical Control) milling machines and provide instructions for operators to execute. Competitors program part features and generate NC code using CAM software, troubleshoot G-code programming errors, interpret prints (including geometric dimensioning and tolerancing or GD&T), measure/gauge parts, and demonstrate their theoretical knowledge of 5-Axis CNC milling machine configuration, setup and operation.

Download the latest technical standards for this demonstration contest.

CNC Programmer (formerly known as CNC Technician)

This competition evaluates each competitor’s ability to independently plan and program jobs for 2-Axis CNC (Computer Numerical Control) turning centers and 3-Axis CNC milling machines and provide instructions for operators to execute. Competitors program part features and generate NC code using CAM software, troubleshoot G-code programming errors, interpret prints (including geometric dimensioning and tolerancing or GD&T), measure/gauge parts, and demonstrate their theoretical knowledge of CNC turning center and milling machine configuration, setup, and operation.

Collision Damage Appraisal

The competition is consistent with expectations and competencies associated with collision repair center estimators (Blue Printers), insurance auto claim appraisers/adjusters and independent appraisers. Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform jobs and skills based on, but not limited to virtual appraisals, computerized estimating specific to frontal damage, unibody damage, light mechanical damage, rear damage including quarter panel replacement and total loss evaluations. The overall accuracy and quality of the finished products, efficiency and communication skills will be judged by industry professionals.

Collision Repair Technology

Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform jobs and skills based on the task list outlined by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and the ASE Education Foundation. The competition includes a series of workstations to assess skills in the following areas: metal straightening, attachment methods, plastic repair and structural analysis. The overall appearance of the finished product, speed and proper safety practices are judged. There are written tests on estimating, structural analysis, and an ASE exam. The students fill out a job application, bring a resume, and go through a mock interview.

Commercial Roofing (Demonstration Contest)

Competitors will install the most commonly used roof type, thermoplastic, on the same mockup used for NRCA’s ProCertification exam. Participants will put on all required safety equipment, roll out a sheet of thermoplastic membrane, mechanically attach it to the deck, flash the perimeter edge wall, and flash around a box and pipe boot. Contest involves a written test, which is the same as the exam for NRCA’s TRAC: Thermoplastic course.

Download the technical standards for this demonstration contest.

Commercial sUAS Drone (Demonstration)

(Team of 2) This competition is designed to evaluate team members’ skills and preparation for employment in multiple career fields related to the safe and efficient use of drone technology in the National Airspace System and to recognize outstanding performance by participants in real-world, scenario-based situations.

Download the technical standards for this demonstration contest.

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Community Action Project

(Team of 2) A team of two students must develop, execute, document and present a completed community service project that provides a benefit to the community or the school and demonstrates excellence and professionalism. The project may be a larger school/community project; however, two students must be part of the core organization team and document the project and results based on the guidelines in the standards.  A letter from the appropriate school official on school letterhead stating that the competitor is classified under the provisions of Public Law 105-17, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 1997, is required for participation.

Community Service

(Team of 3) The community service competition evaluates local chapter activities that benefit the communities while becoming productive community members. SkillsUSA chapters present their best community service project for the year. Competitors are evaluated on a professional portfolio that details their chapter’s community service project and on a presentation to a panel of judges. The competencies that are evaluated are based on the team’s professionalism in the visual representation of the project, designing and implementing an engaging presentation, and effective delivery of that presentation.

Computer Programming

Competitors demonstrate knowledge of computer programming, describe how programs and programming languages work, and describe the purposes and practices of structured programming. The competition may include a computer programming problem consisting of background information and program specifications. An appropriate (successfully executable) computer program from design notes and instructions will be developed.

Cosmetology

Students demonstrate their skills in hair color, haircutting, hair styling and long hair design in four separate tests. All work is performed on mannequins, so everyone begins with the same model and the same type of hair. Competitors will perform one woman’s cut, and one man’s cut from a finished photo. They will also create one uniform layered haircut. A display of creativity is seen in the long hair segment of the competition where these future salon professionals demonstrate their own design skills. A parade finale closes the competition with each competitor walking down the stage with their completed mannequins to present to the audience.

Crime Scene Investigation

(Team of 3) Contestants will demonstrate basic skills associated with working a crime scene. Team members will take a test assessing overall crime scene knowledge. Team members will process a crime scene to include searching, identifying evidence, measuring, photographing, and preparing a sketch. Team members will also demonstrate basic crime scene skills such as lifting a fingerprint, swabbing serological evidence, packaging evidence or similar skills. The team will interpret common crime scene evidence such as classifying a fingerprint pattern. Finally, the team will complete narratives, crime logs and similar paperwork.

Criminal Justice

For students preparing to be police officers or to work in other areas of criminal justice. Typically, this competition will utilize both written examination and practical exercises to evaluate the competitors’ abilities and knowledge of the field. The competitors are scored on their knowledge and application of U.S. Constitutional Law, written and verbal communications skills, and their ability to handle an entry-level law enforcement position.

Culinary Arts

The competition will encompass both hot and cold food preparation and presentation. Competitors will demonstrate their knowledge and skills through the production of menu items meeting industry standards. The competitors are evaluated on organization, knife skills, cooking techniques, creative presentation, sanitation and food safety, and the quality and flavor of their prepared items. High school competitors will create menus to demonstrate required fundamental cooking techniques using items from a common pantry. College/postsecondary students will work from a market basket format and create their own menus using required fundamental cooking techniques.

Customer Service

The competition evaluates students’ proficiency in providing customer service. The competition involves live, role-playing situations. Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform customer service in both written and oral forms including telephone and computer skills, communications, problem solving, conflict resolution and business etiquette.

Cyber Security

(Team of 2) The competition is open to active SkillsUSA members enrolled in programs with Cyber Security, Information Security, or Systems and Networking Security Architecture. Students will be tested on the elements of the NIST Publication 800-181 Cybersecurity Workforce Framework categories including Securely Provision, Operate and Maintain, and Protect and Defend.

Dental Assisting

Competitors demonstrate procedures specified in the accreditation standards for Dental Assisting Education Programs of the Commission on Dental Accreditation. Skill performance may include one or more: chair-side assisting, preparation of dental materials, infection control and emergency, laboratory and office procedures. Skills evaluated may include administrative, clinical or laboratory dental areas.

Diesel Equipment Technology

Competitors cycle through fourteen stations testing and troubleshooting engines, electrical and electronics systems, powertrain systems including chassis, transmissions and carriers. Competitors demonstrate skills in hydraulic systems, vehicle inspections, fundamental failure analysis, brake systems, air-conditioning systems and general shop skills. Competitors also perform a job interview and complete a written test.

Digital Cinema Production

(Team of 2) The competition evaluates and recognizes outstanding students for excellence and professionalism with their filmmaking skills in the areas of development, pre-production, production and postproduction through the writing, producing, directing and editing of an up to five-minute short film based on the prompt given.

Early Childhood Education

Competitors demonstrate their knowledge of developmentally appropriate practice and their ability to prepare and implement learning activities for children three to five years old. Competitors will prepare a written lesson plan and take a written test assessing their knowledge of child development and effective teaching strategies. They will demonstrate their understanding of the unique age-related learning characteristics of young children and the relevant social interactions as they implement the lesson.

Electrical Construction Wiring

Competitors are required to complete a written test of questions formulated from the latest edition of the National Electric Code (NEC), a practical conduit bending exercise and hands-on installation of a conduit system, cabling system and wiring devices. Working from drawings and specification sheets, competitors are required to install an electrical system common in most residential and light commercial projects. Judging is based on general workmanship, accuracy of layout and installation, and adherence to the current NEC and standard industry safe practices.

Electronics Technology

The competition is divided into five sections: customer service exam, written exam, soldering, breadboarding and troubleshooting. Competitors demonstrate their knowledge of analog and digital circuitry; ability to troubleshoot electronic circuits; ability to construct and test experimental circuits; and ability to design and select circuit components. All aspects of the competition test competitors’ abilities to use and calibrate electronic equipment, record and organize data, and demonstrate proper safety practices.

Emergency Medical Technician (Demonstration Contest)

(Team of 2) The competition will evaluate the competitors’ ability to perform as an Emergency Medical Technician with the National Registry Patient Assessment Technical Scope of Practice Standards (TSOPS) as defined by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA, 2007, p.24), the most current American Heart Association CPR/ECC guidelines, and the AAOS Emergency Care and Transportation of the Sick and Injured 11th Ed. The event will consist of three rounds of competition for a two-person team.

Emergency Medical Technician Technical Standards

Employment Application Process

Tests the competitor’s readiness in applying for employment and their understanding of the process. The competition includes completing an application and interviewing with the judges. Their resume and portfolio are used during their interviews. The competition is available to students who are classified under the provisions of Public Law 105-17, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 1997.

Engineering Technology/Design

(Team of 3) Students demonstrate their ability to design an innovative engineering project and present those ideas along with a display and live model. During the presentation, students are judged on their performance as a professional team, presentation of their project to a panel of judges from the engineering field, their storyboard presentation model, and the overall effect of the presentation.

Entrepreneurship

(Team of 4) A team event testing students' knowledge in starting their own businesses by developing business plans that identify needed products or services in a local market. Emphasis is placed on financial planning and practicality of product/service. Teams give oral presentations based upon their written plans and the team must successfully answer questions by a team of judges in response to typical problems encountered by entrepreneurs during their first year of business.

Esthetics

The competitors are evaluated on their techniques and professionalism in the field of skin care. Competitors are tested in two different soft skill tasks including a written knowledge exam covering the fundamentals of skin care and oral professional presentation. Additionally, competitors are tested in four technical skill performance tasks consisting of a facial cleansing massage; basic facial; beauty makeup; and fantasy makeup applications. An emphasis on safety and infection control measures will be used in all segments of the skill performance areas.

Extemporaneous Speaking (includes Middle School)

The competition requires competitors to give a three- to five-minute speech on an assigned topic with five minutes of advance preparation. Competitors enter the preparation area one at a time, where they are given a speech topic. They are judged on voice, mechanics, platform deportment, organization and effectiveness.

Facilithon: Leadership in Facility Management (Demonstration Contest)

To assess the competitor’s critical problem-solving skills, ability to quickly execute the best response to challenges and ability to accurately digest complex situations and convey related solutions related to the field of facility management.  Competitors complete a multiple-choice quiz, a 15-minute role-play scenario, and a 5 minute emergency challenge.  They are judged on understanding of the problem, analysis and approach to the solution, creativity, and thinking on your feet.

Download the technical standards for this competition.

Firefighting

The competition evaluates the competitor’s preparation for firefighting careers through hands-on skill demonstrations and both written and oral presentations. Areas tested include safety; breathing apparatus; fire streams; ladders, ropes, knots and hoses; fire control; ventilation; emergency medical care and rescue; and protecting fire cause evidence.

First Aid/CPR

Evaluates a competitor's ability to perform procedures or take appropriate action based on scenarios presented related to CPR (Adult/AED, 2-man system, child and infant CPR) first aid medical emergencies. There is also a written exam. All skills are judged on nationally accepted standards identified by The American Red Cross, The American Heart Association, The American Safety and Health Institute and The National Safety Council.

Graphic Communications

Student competitors may compete in most or all the following competition segments: preparing a job and printing it with a digital printing device, creating and preflighting a print-ready file using Adobe software, performing exercises with offset press simulator software, solving production planning challenges, and taking a graphic arts knowledge test.

Graphic Imaging – Sublimation

Contestants are tested on their ability to design, print and transfer, and understand the dye sublimation process to decorate various materials, including drinkware, mouse pads, license plates, t-shirts, cutting boards, ceramic tiles, slates and more.

Health Knowledge Bowl

(Team of 4) The competition tests teams of students on their collective knowledge within the healthcare system. Teams are judged on accuracy of answering questions in a variety of categories including anatomy and physiology; medical terminology; healthcare procedures; healthcare systems; employability skills; legal responsibility; ethics; safety practices; current events related to healthcare; communication and teamwork.

Health Occupations Professional Portfolio

The competition recognizes students for their successful development of a professional portfolio. The competition evaluates the ability of the students to present themselves to a prospective employer. The competitors show the use of the portfolio and use effective communication skills in presenting. The competition consists of two parts: a professional portfolio and a live presentation by the competitor.

Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR)

The competition includes a series of testing stations designed to assess skills identified by industry HVACR standards. Industry equipment used during the workstations portion of the competition may include but is not limited to ice machines, refrigerated display cases, small package HVAC units, furnaces and split-system air conditioning and/or heat pump units and geothermal units.

Heavy Equipment Operation Demonstration (Demonstration Contest)

Heavy Equipment Operators are needed on construction sites all over the country now more than ever. Students should have knowledge of equipment operation, day to day maintenance and activities (such as surveying and blueprint reading) on various machines in different applications. The competition will evaluate each contestant’s preparation for employment and recognize outstanding students for excellence and professionalism in the field of Heavy Equipment Operation.

Download the technical standards for this demonstration contest.

Industrial Motor Control

Students demonstrate their knowledge of electrical principles, equipment and industry codes and standards as it relates to the design and installation of motor control systems. Students demonstrate their skills and abilities in applying that knowledge by properly installing motor control equipment and associated enclosures, raceways, pilot devices and circuitry in accordance with accepted industry practice and National Electric Code requirements.

Information Technology Services

Competitors compete in modules designed to test their knowledge as an IT service professional. The competition will challenge competitors to correct end-user computing issues, configure and secure networks, manage virtual machines, navigate and modify operating system internals, deploy operating systems, leverage troubleshooting software and tools, identify virus and malware origins, work with mobile devices, and proficiently use command line interfaces. Operating system is Windows. Additionally, competitors are evaluated on their interpersonal skills (such as communication, teamwork and honesty). In the national contest, competitors take the required exams for the CompTIA A+ Certification and receive their official CompTIA A+ certification if they pass.

Interactive Application and Video Game Development

(Team of 2) The competition is a two-person team event that tests technical knowledge and production skills, including critical thinking, creative problem solving, teamwork, interpersonal and visual communication, artistic design and technical programming. Teams must produce an original prototype or sample of an interactive application or video game with at least one level and ten (10) minutes of interactive content. It must be created during the school year immediately preceding the competition deadline.

Internet of Things and Smart Home

The competition tests each competitor’s preparation for employment and recognizes outstanding students for excellence and professionalism in the field of home technology integration. The competitors will complete both a written test and hands on demonstration of the installation of “smart home” residential products including bulbs; thermostats; locks; alarms; sensors; cameras; speakers; home theater systems; computer networking; and video security equipment. Construction of the various interconnecting cables such as cat 6/networking cables, coax cables and low and high voltage residential wiring will also be necessary. The competition will challenge competitors to configure and secure networks, update firmware/software and configure operating system settings. Troubleshooting skills will also be tested. Finally, the competition requires a demonstration of all hardware software set up, completed in an easy to understand manner fit for the typical customer.

Internetworking

The competition focuses on testing the networking knowledge and hands-on ability of the competitors. The online written portion tests the student’s complete knowledge of internetworking concepts. The hands-on component demonstrates the abilities of the competitor to make cables, troubleshoot network systems, configure routers, switches and servers, and to deliver customer service in a technical assistant center environment. The competitors will find errors in WAN and LAN networks; do a full network configuration using routers, switches, and servers; talk a technician through an error they are having on their network; and take an online certification-type test. The national competition is based on the most current CCNA certification. In today’s job market system administration skills are needed, therefore server skills that will be scored include, but are not limited to DNS, Active Directory and DHCP. For more information including last-minute updates on the national competition, be sure to follow our Facebook page.

Job Interview

The competition is divided into three phases: completion of employment applications; preliminary interview(s) with a receptionist; and in-depth interview(s). Competitors are evaluated on their understanding of employment procedures faced in applying for positions in the occupational areas in which they are training. A professional portfolio component will be introduced at the 2023 national conference and scored in 2024.

Job Skill Demonstration A (includes Middle School)

Competitors demonstrate and explain an entry-level skill used in the occupational area for which they are training. Competitors in Job Skill Demonstration A must demonstrate a career objective in an occupational area that is included in one of the competition areas of the SkillsUSA Championships. The competition requires a demonstration performing an occupational skill accompanied by a clear explanation of the topic using experiments, displays or practical operations.

Job Skill Demonstration Open (includes Middle School)

Competitors demonstrate and explain an entry-level technical skill used either in the occupational area for which he or she is training or outside the training area. The competition requires a demonstration performing an occupational skill accompanied by a clear explanation of the topic using experiments, displays or practical operations.

Marine Service Technology

The competition includes individual skill stations and a written or online test. The hands-on test stations include many aspects of two-stroke and four-stroke outboard, sterndrive and inboard troubleshooting and repair. Students should be proficient in marine application electrical/ignition systems, fuel systems, cooling systems, lubrication systems, drive/transmission/jet propulsion systems and boat and trailer rigging and repair. The written or online test includes the above listed topics including diagnostics, service and repair of marine accessory items. Competitors will be judged on safe work practices, cleanliness, organizational skills, accuracy, speed and completion of assigned tasks, worksheets and paperwork.

Masonry

The competition highlights skills training in masonry, spotlights the industry’s finest masons and focuses attention on careers in the masonry industry. Competitors are expected to construct a composite brick and block project in a six-hour period that tests their ability to meet industry standards in quality. In addition to a written exam, students are judged on the most frequently used details in masonry construction.

Mechatronics

(Team of 2) The competition requires competitors to have the ability to understand complex systems that integrate various elements in the mechanical, fluid power and controls domain, combined with the ability to work in a team environment with people with different areas of expertise. Mechatronic specialists must have well developed skills in pneumatic technology, electrical and electronics systems, mechanical systems and general automation techniques and practices, including systematic troubleshooting methods. This competition consists of three events designed to measure the skills required in the modern automated manufacturing environment. Competitors are required to assemble, adjust and test an automated machine system, troubleshoot and repair a faulty machine system and take a comprehensive written test. The competition elements have been designed to be as realistic as possible, closely resembling the tasks and activities of modern automation professionals. In addition, there is an individual oral interview. College/postsecondary teams are required to provide their own PLC that will be used in the construction phase.

Medical Assisting

Competitors are judged on their skills, speed, use of correct safety measures and the ability to interact personally with the patient(s). The competition consists of various stations associated with skills that may be found in an ambulatory medical office or clinic. The competitors are judged on general office skills, communication skills, patient education, knowledge of anatomy and physiology, knowledge of medical terminology, instruments, medical equipment and on procedures and techniques found in an ambulatory medical office or clinic. Competitors are given a scenario which requires action. They should be able to read scenarios, assess the supplies/equipment and/or situation in a short period of time and execute the skill required for that situation within the given time limit. Documentation, grammar, correct pronunciation and spelling count in all stations.

Medical Math

Competitors demonstrate their knowledge of general math concepts used in the healthcare field. They complete a written test that may include the use of ratio/proportion, dosage calculation, metric and household equivalents, Roman numerals, abbreviations, and general math including percentages, along with other medical math-related problems.

Medical Terminology

This competition evaluates the knowledge of medical terminology and abbreviations used by an individual preparing for employment in the health occupations fields. Competitors will demonstrate knowledge of medical word roots, prefixes, suffixes, medical word building and medical abbreviations by successfully answering the questions. Content for the test is based on the Core Standards from the National Health Care Core Skills Standards Project.

Mobile Electronics Installation

This competition tests competitors’ abilities to perform standard installation practices used by certified, professional mobile electronics installers. These skills have been established through the certification objectives and items created for the Basic MECP certification by the Consumer Electronics Association. This event includes a written examination covering the Basic MECP certification, a professional interview and five hands-on applications that include taking electrical measurements, installing consumer electronics equipment in a mobile environment, soldiering, working with relay circuits and troubleshooting electronic circuitry.

Mobile Robotics Technology (includes Middle School)

(Team of 2) The competition includes activities that simulate situations encountered by robotic programmers and support professionals. Teams are given a task to solve using a mobile robotic system that is built ahead of time and brought to the competition. Teams will have two scored chances to solve the mobile robotic challenge and will be given a design and programming interview. Once a team has performed the required task or set of tasks, a design change may be introduced. Competitors are required to adhere to industry safety standards using the hardware and software they have selected.

Motorcycle Service Technology

Competitors perform tasks representative of those encountered in a dealership's service department. Technical skills include performing scheduled maintenance tasks; use of service, electrical diagnostic and parts manuals; electrical diagnostics; precision measurement; brake service; chassis/suspension service; fuel delivery system inspection and repair; transmission and drive systems; and powertrain systems. Judges will look for clean and organized work habits, the correct use of reference materials, the ability to follow directions and good technical skills.

Nail Care

The competition evaluates the competitor’s ability to perform the most common nail services in the salon today. The competition consists of six separate segments: oral communication skills; acrylic application; tip and light-cured enhancement overlay application; nail polish application; nail art; pedicuring and a written exam. The written exam tests basic knowledge of proper sanitation, chemical safety, salon procedures, etc.

Nurse Assisting

Competitors demonstrate knowledge and skill in performing personal care, encouraging patient independence, assisting with ambulation, as well as standard infection control procedures used in basic nurse assisting. Students also demonstrate knowledge and abilities in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the measurement of vital signs. Competitors must be familiar with basic anatomy, communications skills, legal/ethical issues and employment skills.

Occupational Health and Safety

(Team of 3) Competitors demonstrate the safety and health endeavors of their respective technical programs by assembling a scrapbook that highlights important programs, activities and events related to their school’s health and safety program. The competition encourages chapters to be active in all aspects of SkillsUSA. The health and safety activities of the chapters will be evaluated on the planning, organization and outcome of four projects. Students are interviewed and portfolios are scored by a panel of judges based on the quality and content of the books and on the candidates’ presentation during the interview process. “Single” refers to a SkillsUSA chapter that represents one occupational area. “Multiple” refers to an entry that represents more than one occupational program.

Opening and Closing Ceremonies (includes Middle School)

(Team of 7) This teamwork and oral presentation competition evaluates a team’s understanding of the symbolic representation of the colors and assembled parts of the SkillsUSA emblem. Each team includes seven registered members in the roles of president, vice president, parliamentarian, reporter, treasurer, secretary and historian.

Outstanding Chapter (includes Middle School)

(Team of 3) The competition consists of activities members have been involved with during the school year including chapter meetings, leadership training, publicity, community service projects, professional development, program of work, awards, local and state competitions and other selected chapter activities. Each activity is documented in a professional portfolio and a team of three members are interviewed.

Photography

Competitors are put through a series of real-world photographic scenarios and are judged on their overall mastery of the following skills: understanding the features of today's digital SLR or mirrorless cameras, field assignment, producing a contact sheet, producing a composited digital fine art piece from their field assignment, 50 question written test, portrait/commercial studio using strobes, troubleshooting common photo errors, print competition, and job interview.

Pin Design (State, includes Middle School)

Students present their winning state conference pin and artwork and participate in an oral presentation regarding all aspects of their creation of the design. Competitors will explain how the pin represents their state, its unique qualities and why another SkillsUSA student or adult member would want to wear the pin. The competitor will create a tabletop display that represents the process they used to create the design.

Plumbing

Competitors rough-in hot and cold-water lines with copper tubing and rough-in sanitary drainage, waste and vent lines with cast iron and PVC plastic for a water closet, a lavatory, a washer box and a floor drain. Water pipes are pressure tested on completed projects. Professional plumbers and pipefitters judge the competitors on accuracy, workmanship, proper selection and use of tools and supplies and proper safety procedures.

Power Equipment Technology

The competition is consistent with the power equipment technology standards for multi-category accreditation task list outlined in Sections 3 thru 7, published by the Equipment & Engine Training Council (EETC). Competitors perform tasks representative of those encountered in a dealership's service department. As the competitors rotate through the various stations, they are judged and scored on technical and oral skills. Competitors must demonstrate excellent customer service skills, safe work practices, cleanliness, organization, accuracy, speed, and completion of assigned tasks. The hands-on stations include many aspects of two-stroke, four-stroke, compact diesel engines, and battery-powered equipment and their associated mechanical, hydraulic and electrical systems.

Practical Nursing

Competitors demonstrate their ability to perform procedures and skills consistent with practical nursing competencies as determined by State Boards of Nursing. Competitors are judged on their knowledge of medical terminology, body structure and function, nutrition, medications and nursing care. They must also demonstrate their abilities to perform job skills such as administration of oral, subcutaneous and nasogastric medications; physical assessment; insertion of a nasogastric tube; sterile dressing change and cardiopulmonary resuscitation. At each workstation, they are judged on accuracy of their skill, organization, communication and safety.

Prepared Speech (includes Middle School)

The competition requires students to deliver a five- to seven-minute prepared speech based on the annual SkillsUSA competition theme. Competitors are evaluated on their ability to present thoughts relating to the central theme clearly and effectively, and are rated on voice, mechanics and platform deportment.

Principles of Engineering/Technology

The competition evaluates competitors’ understanding of basic technical concepts and principles of the applied sciences and their ability to demonstrate and explain the concept/principle in action and application. Any technical concept may be demonstrated, provided it is related to the principles of technology or engineering curriculum and incorporates basic principles of the applied sciences.

Promotional Bulletin Board

(Team of 3) The competition evaluates bulletin board displays created by SkillsUSA chapters based on the annual SkillsUSA competition theme. The bulletin boards promote SkillsUSA, career and technical education in general and related occupational information. An accompanying professional portfolio documents the development and construction of the bulletin board. An oral presentation explains the process, purpose and educational value of the bulletin board.

Quiz Bowl

(Team of 5-7) The Quiz Bowl competition tests a team of five to seven competitors on their ability to quickly respond to knowledge questions covering academics, current events and SkillsUSA professional development curriculum. Teams will demonstrate communication skills, teamwork, problem solving and time-management skills by determining and presenting the answer to each question clearly within the five-second time frame. Each competitor will take two written tests. One will be a written Quiz Bowl test covering general academic and current events issues. The other will be the national SkillsUSA Professional Development test.

Related Technical Math

By taking a written test, competitors demonstrate the skills required to solve mathematical problems correctly that are commonly found in the skilled trades and professional and technical occupations. Skills demonstrated include addition; subtraction; multiplication; division of whole numbers; fractions and decimals; applied word problems; percentages; ratio proportions; averages; area; volume; metric measures; and traditional (Imperial) measures and trigonometry.

Residential and Commercial Appliance Technology

Competitors rotate from station to station diagnosing common service issues on residential and commercial refrigeration, laundry, cooking, dishwashing and food serving products. Competitors also demonstrate their ability to braze and use Lokring technology by assembling a copper and steel tubing project per a schematic provided. The competitor’s customer satisfaction and employability skills will also be evaluated using interviews, job applications and various types of assessments. There is a need for good understanding and use of tools and test equipment, providing the most professional service available to customers as necessary. There is also a residential and commercial appliance technology general knowledge learning exercise.

Restaurant Service

Competitors are tested on skills required in the front of the house of a fine dining restaurant. The focus is on guest service and guest relations in the dining room including table set up; greeting guests; reservations procedures; presentation of menus; description of food, drinks, soups and specials of the day; taking orders; serving each course and clearing the table after each course; and preparation and presentation of the check and closing remarks. Competitors are judged on personal appearance, tableside manner, professionalism, ease with guests, courtesy, general knowledge and technical and verbal skills.

Robotics and Automation Technology

(Team of 2) This competition challenges two-person teams to demonstrate operation of a five-axis servo-robot along with a set of sensors and motorized devices to resolve a production process problem. Teams set up and demonstrate operation of a robotic workcell from a word problem. Competitors also utilize and program a Siemens LOGO PLC as part of the contest as well as a Cognex vision camera. Competitors are required to create a flowchart and sequence of operation. Teams are also judged on efficiency, speed and teamwork.

Robotics: Urban Search and Rescue (includes Middle School)

(Team of 2) Teams are required to build a robot and arm mechanism prior to the competition. The robot must be capable of locating, grabbing and moving simulated ordnances on the challenge course. This competition assesses proficiencies such as remotely operating the robot via camera, navigation, manipulating the arm mechanism to collect simulated ordnances, traversing various types of terrain, and communication between driver and spotter.

Screen Printing Technology

Competitors are tested on their ability to prepare screens (coat, expose, etc.), register a multi-color design on a manual printing press and print a multi-color design on a manual printing press. Competitors also complete a written technical knowledge test and participate in an oral professional assessment.

Sheet Metal

Competitors are tested on their ability to perform such jobs as connecting sheet metal pieces with drive cleats, spot welding and riveting. Skills tested may include, but are not limited to, straight duct, transition fitting and 45-degree entry tap fitting. Professional sheet metal workers judge competitors on the use of hand tools, correctness of layout and shop safety procedures. Competitors are judged on accuracy, completeness and craftsmanship.

T-shirt Design (State, includes Middle School)

Students present their winning state conference T-shirt and create a professional portfolio that documents the process they used to create the design. Competitors will participate in an oral presentation regarding all aspects of their creation of the design and explain how the T-shirt represents their state, its unique qualities and why another SkillsUSA student or adult member would want to wear the shirt.

Team Engineering Challenge (Middle School only)

(Team of 3) This competition evaluates and recognizes outstanding students for excellence and professionalism in the areas of creative and critical thinking skills and the decision-making process used to solve a problem. The competition is intended to foster creativity, innovation, teamwork and problem-solving skills.

TeamWorks

(Team of 4) Competitors work together to build a construction project over two days that demonstrates their ability to work as a team. Each team will be required to understand the project elements based on a detailed blueprint and special instructions presented at the pre-competition orientation. Each team must then write a project completion action plan and present their plan as one of the key elements of the competition (all team members must participate in the presentation). During the construction project, the team demonstrates their ability to work together by using their carpentry, roofing, electrical, plumbing and masonry skills. Judging is based on the team’s presentation skills, ability to construct the project per competition specified building codes, jobsite safety and cleanliness, organized and correct ordering of materials from the competition material depot, proper use and accountability of tools and equipment and the rate of completion of the project.

Technical Computer Applications

Competitors will demonstrate installation, configuration and use of Windows, Mac OSX and Linux Professional Operating Systems and one or more integrated office suite packages including email, word processing, spreadsheet applications, database applications, web page development, money management applications, presentations applications, internet browser applications, etc. The use of open-source software such as OpenOffice is preferable. Microsoft Office and other integrated office suites can be used. The utilization of instant messaging, collaboration and social networking software will be required during the contest. Competitors are expected to perform in teams while demonstrating individual technical skills. The competition includes an oral presentation demonstrating the student’s ability to communicate with others, a hands-on skills demonstration and a written examination.

Technical Drafting

The competition evaluates a competitor’s preparation for employment and recognizes outstanding students for excellence and professionalism in the field of technical drafting. The competition will focus on the solution of industry-developed problems by applying appropriate technical drafting skills and tools including computer-aided drafting (CAD).

Telecommunications Cabling

For students interested in voice and data network cabling and installation. Industry indicates that 80% of the problems in networking, security systems installations and other installations are caused by cabling and connectivity issues not the computers, servers, switches, etc. This competition tests worldwide industry standards related to cabling and connectorization for data and voice connections, physical and logical networks and signal transmission. Competitors demonstrate skills in fiber and copper cable termination, pulling and mounting cabling, patch panel installation and termination, installing jacks, cable and fiber optic testing and troubleshooting, and providing customer service. The competition stresses safety in all activities.

Television (Video) Production

(Team of 2) Competitors are required to plan and shoot a video (generally 30 seconds or one minute in length) on location to convey the theme of the event. Editing is done in the competition area with special emphasis on professional production of the video by industry standards, quality of audio and video and adequate conveyance of the theme to the viewer of the final piece.

Video News Production (formerly known as Broadcast News Production)

(Team of 4) Teams have two hours to write and produce their rundown before the assigned competition time. Two students serve as the news anchor team, one student serves as the team’s director/technical director, and one student is the floor director. Teams will produce and complete a three-minute newscast as if it were live. Teams are evaluated on their broadcast writing ability, voice quality, diction, timing and pacing and performance techniques.

Web Design and Development

(Team of 2) Teams complete a series of challenges focusing on creating a website for a client and a specific target audience. Judging will focus on meeting the client's needs, usability and accessibility, and industry-standard best practices. Teams will also be evaluated on the process they use to meet the challenges and how well they work as a team. Teams will need Internet access as all competition materials (including the coding environment) will only be available online.

Welding

Competitors receive competition drawings and a set of welding procedure specifications that conform to the latest edition of the American Welding Society standards. At a series of stations, competitors are tested on various aspects of welding: measuring weld replicas, using weld measuring gauges; laying out a plate and using oxy-acetylene equipment to cut several holes that are checked for accuracy and quality; gas metal arc welding (GMAW) on steel making welds in various positions using short circuiting transfers; flux cored arc welding (FCAW) using a shielding gas, making welds in various positions and, using a combination machine capable of providing the correct welding current for shielded metal arc (SMAW) and gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW). Competitors complete the steel project and weld an aluminum project in various positions using a variety of filler metals.

An overview of the contest is featured in video below:

Welding Fabrication

(Team of 3) This competition requires a team of three students to use their welding and fabrication skills to build a designed project from the provided material. The project is constructed by the competitors based on prints provided. Teams should be skilled in the following welding and cutting processes: SMAW, GTAW, GMAW, FCAW / OFC and PAC.  The students are also required to be proficient in using common tools of a workshop.

Welding Sculpture

Competitors demonstrate their ability to design and produce a welded sculpture and to describe all aspects of the creation of their design. Welded sculptures are displayed for the national competition along with a professional portfolio documenting evidence of creating the original work. Each participant is interviewed regarding the design and creation of the piece. The introduction of an onsite welding component will be demonstrated in the 2023 competition and scored in 2024.