Executive Update: April 1, 2021

Executive Update: April 1, 2021

Important Dates:
May 4: SkillsUSA National Signing Day
May 5-6: Connect to My Future Conference
May 8: SkillsUSA’s 56th Anniversary

SkillsUSA Loses a Champion

Harold Lewis, a member of the SkillsUSA national headquarters staff from September 1974 until June 1997, passed away in Gladstone, Mo., on March 18. SkillsUSA lost not just one of our true champions, but one of our trail-blazing pioneers. Lewis was associated with SkillsUSA since its inception in 1965 (then known as “VICA”), first as a local advisor and then as the state director for SkillsUSA Kansas. He joined the national staff in 1974, where he helped shape the SkillsUSA Championships into the awe-inspiring event it’s become. Read SkillsUSA executive director Chelle Travis’ statement on Lewis’ passing, which includes a link to his obituary and an address for condolences.

SkillsUSA Job Opening: Executive Office Liaison

SkillsUSA has a job opening in the Office of the Executive Director for an executive office liaison. Click here for the full job description. The deadline for applications is April 6.

ACTE Releases Report on CTE During and After COVID-19

While COVID-19 has led to many challenges for career and technical instructors, the pandemic has also created opportunities for innovation in education. ACTE’s latest publication describes these challenges, shares innovative practices and provides recommendations for how CTE leaders can better prepare the post-COVID-19 workforce and embrace lessons learned during the pandemic.

SkillsUSA National Signing Day Returns

On May 4, SkillsUSA National Signing Day returns to celebrate high school seniors and college/postsecondary students who have chosen to pursue careers as professionals in the skilled trades. Learn more about National Signing Day on our site, where you can also download toolkits and other resources to help chapters in your state host their own events.   

New “Connect to My Future” Conference Debuts in May

SkillsUSA hosts its first “Connect to My Future” career conference from May 5-6. The new event will create an authentic career-focused experience through meaningful connections between students and industry partners. It features three program tracks: “Explore” for middle school students, “Aspire” for high school students, and “Connect” for high school seniors and college/postsecondary students. Note: High school seniors are welcome to attend either “Aspire” or “Connect.”

National Conference Schedule Available

SkillsUSA’s National Leadership and Skills Conference may be virtual this year, but genuine excitement is building. Along with a full SkillsUSA Championships, the conference will include delegate sessions, national officer elections and opportunities for leadership development, professional development and member/ chapter recognition. Click here for the full NLSC schedule of dates and activities. Registration will be open April 12-May 14. 

Leadership Development Scholarships for Leverage Training

Funded by former SkillsUSA board president and Caterpillar executive Robert L. Flint, the SkillsUSA Leadership Development Scholarship provides financial support for over 100 state officers to participate in Leverage leadership training each summer. State directors must submit the applications for their state officers, and the deadline is May 7. Click here for the application and more information. For additional scholarships, click here. 

Reminder: Annual Corporate Forms Needed

State SkillsUSA directors are requested to complete the annual Corporate Form by Friday, April 23. This information is essential. Complete the form here.

Due Dates

April 2: National Technical Honor Society Scholarship applications due
April 15Sharon Melton Myers Memorial SkillsUSA Scholarship fund applications due
April 16: Registration deadline for National Signing Day and Connect To My Future Conference
April 23: Annual Corporate Forms due
May 7: Student Leadership Development Scholarship applications due
May 21: Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Rewards for Teacher Excellence application deadline
May 30: #Keep Craft Alive Scholarship applications due
June 1: National Officer Candidate applications due
June 1: Larry Rash Memorial Scholarship applications due
August 1: Clifford H. “Ted” Rees, Jr. Scholarship applications due