Executive Update: February 1, 2020

Executive Update: February 1, 2020

Important Dates
February 2020: Career and Technical Education Month
Feb. 2-8: SkillsUSA Week
Feb. 10-13: SkillsUSA Championships Technical Committee Chair Planning Meeting, Atlanta, Ga.
March 10-13: SkillsUSA Board of Director’s Meeting, Atlanta, Ga.

Message from Chelle

I am happy to announce that we already have ten states that have exceeded their previous year’s total SkillsUSA membership! Congratulations to the following state SkillsUSA directors for your leadership in member recruitment and development and thank you for your dedication and steadfast support of our teachers and students.

  • Anton Doos, Virgin Islands
  • Victor Nieves-Flores, Puerto Rico
  • Clay Mitchell, California
  • Karen Ward, Massachusetts
  • Darren Gibson, Oklahoma
  • Tammy Brown, Michigan
  • Jessica Donelan Graber, Florida
  • Heidi Griffin, Connecticut
  • Tjazha Mazhani, Georgia postsecondary
  • Melissa Wilkinson, West Virginia

New SkillsUSA Staff Members Welcomed at the National Leadership Center
We are delighted to welcome our newest staff member, Megan Flinn. Megan is serving as the Career Essentials Program Specialist will be a great asset to our teachers and students. Megan has extensive experience related to mission-driven work. She has worked with the West Virginia State Parks as a park naturalist and event coordinator, and for the National Humane Education Society as an education coordinator. Most recently, she has worked for a historic and land preservation nonprofit in the Waterford National Historic Landmark. Megan’s desire to serve others is evident. She is currently completing a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership in nonprofit management.

We are also delighted to welcome new senior regional manager Brandon Monk. Brandon will be a great asset to our Region 3 states. He brings a wealth of experience in career and technical student organization management (CTSO), budgeting, and stakeholder relations. As a former CTSO advisor, state director and foundation director, he understands the important role that regional liaisons play in communication and support for an organization. Additionally, Brandon has served as a CTE classroom teacher. Brandon is completing his master’s degree with a concentration in leadership development. He is engaged in his community of Winchester (Va.) and currently serves as a member of his local board of education. 

2019 Year In Review Video is Here!
SkillsUSA members accomplished some amazing and life-changing things in 2019. Check out this year’s Year In Review Video by Tom Kercheval, our senior manager for audiovisual technology/communications and celebrate the life-changing impact of SkillsUSA! You are welcome to share this video on your website, social media or send the link to others.

It’s SkillsUSA Week!

State SkillsUSA directors, please celebrate SkillsUSA Week with your members:

SkillsUSA Week is Feb. 2-8 and schools can participate in many different ways: hold an open house, invite local media to tour your programs, conduct a community service project, work with area businesses to build more meaningful partnerships, or engage with policymakers to talk about the value of career and technical education.

  • Monday, Feb. 3, Appreciation Day
  • Tuesday, Feb. 4, Advocacy Day
  • Wednesday, Feb. 5, Member Outreach Day
  • Thursday, Feb. 6, SkillsUSA Service Day
  • Friday, Feb. 7, SkillsUSA Day

For a sample calendar, proclamation and press release, go to: www.skillsusa.org/events-training/skillsusa-week.

SkillsUSA has a new SkillsUSA Advocacy Day resource bundle with everything you need to communicate key messages about SkillsUSA. It includes 12 of each of the following items:

  • SkillsUSA Advocacy Brochures
  • SkillsUSA Framework Folder
  • SkillsUSA Framework Pin & Card
  • SkillsUSA Thank You Card

To purchase the bundle, go to: www.skillsusa.org/store/advocacy-bundle-details.html.

SkillsUSA Week and CTE Month Press Release Templates Available
We have refreshed our SkillsUSA Advocacy Site just in time for SkillsUSA Week and CTE Month. Use the fill-in press releases to let your elected officials and local To use the SkillsUSA advocacy site, go to: www.congressweb.com/susa/. There are two postings for SkillsUSA Week — one to write your elected officials and another to contact your local media to let them know about your events during the month of February. Personalize the templates that work for you. If you have questions, contact Jane Short at 703-737-0612 or jshort@skillsusa.org.

Share Your SkillsUSA Week Photos
As you conduct SkillsUSA Week activities, take photos and share them with the national headquarters staff. Your photos may be featured in a Flickr gallery on SkillsUSA’s home page. Send your best SkillsUSA Week photos to Craig Moore at cmoore@skillsusa.org. Please be sure to identify everyone in the picture for the caption. 

Share Your SkillsUSA Week News
Share your SkillsUSA Week news and stories Share your SkillsUSA Week news and stories with @SkillsUSA (FacebookTwitter or Instagram) or email info@skillsusa.org.

SkillsUSA Seeks Talented COO 

SkillsUSA is seeking an experienced chief operating officer. The new position is now posted on the SkillsUSA website  and remote employment is not an option for this position. Interested applicants should summit a resume and cover letter to Missy Wilson at mwilson@skillsusa.org by Feb. 14. Download the job description here.

Looking for Images for SkillsUSA Champions 

SkillsUSA Champions features student photography in each issue. We’re looking for images of SkillsUSA chapters in action or showing the concentration or perseverance of individual members performing hands-on skills. For details, email anyinfo@skillsusa.org and put “Image Photo” in the subject header or write SkillsUSA Champions, 14001 SkillsUSA Way, Leesburg, VA 20176. The photographer’s chapter is awarded $150 for each photo we publish (one per issue). 

Register Members by March 1 to Receive Valuable Benefits 

State SkillsUSA directors, please pass this on to your advisors:

The national membership deadline is March 1. Students must meet both state and national deadlines to be eligible for national competition, serve as voting delegates or run for national office. Professional membership provides valuable benefits, too. Once advisors join and provide their email address, they will receive access to the following:

  • 2020 SkillsUSA Championships Technical Standards 
  • Jump into STEM! curriculum
  • SkillsUSA Career Essentials: Foundations

Call the SkillsUSA Membership Hotline if you need help in starting a new chapter, registering members, engaging students, or discovering strategies to strengthen an existing chapter. If you have questions or need assistance, the hotline operators can help. Call toll free: 844-875-4557 from 8 a.m.–5 p.m. EST Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and 11 a.m.–7 p.m. EST Tuesday and Thursday, or email operators@skillsusa.org.

Lincoln Electric Offers Prizes for State Winners

State SkillsUSA Directors: Lincoln Electric Co. is once again offering prizes for your state contests in Welding, Welding Fabrication and Welding Sculpture. The prizes are for the top three placements plus a prize for the first-place teams’ instructors.

All state directors have received the order forms from Dave Worden via email. Please complete the forms and submit directly to Lincoln Electric for processing. If you need the forms, contact dworden@skillsusa.org.

Please encourage students and instructors to send a “thank you” to Lincoln Electric for the prizes to the attention of Tim Echan, Senior Customer Training Instructor, The Lincoln Electric Company, 22800 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland, Ohio 44117.

Bylaw Amendment Deadline Approaching 

Current SkillsUSA members can submit proposed bylaw amendments for middle school, high school or college/postsecondary divisions. Bylaw amendment motions must be submitted in writing to Kim Hegedus at khegedus@skillsusa.org by Feb. 3 by 5 p.m. EST.

SkillsUSA’s National Executive Council and board of directors will review all submissions at the March 2020 board meeting. All motions will then be distributed to state SkillsUSA directors by April 20, which is 60 days prior to the National Leadership and Skills Conference (NLSC). Motions will then be presented for vote at the official business meeting of the House of Delegates during the 2020 NLSC.

Bylaw amendments are governed by Article XII of the high school and college/postsecondary bylaws and Article X of the middle school bylaws.

For more information and to view the bylaws, go to: www.skillsusa.org/events-training/national-leadership-and-skills-conference/delegate-sessions/.

The motion form is located here: www.skillsusa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Bylaw-Amendment-Form.docx.

If you have questions, contact Kim Hegedus at 317-544-8750 or khegedus@skillsusa.org. 

Plan Now for SkillsUSA National Signing Day on May 8

The second annual SkillsUSA National Signing Day will be held on Friday, May 8 to celebrate high school seniors and college/postsecondary students who have chosen to pursue a career as a professional in the skilled trades.

SkillsUSA chapters are encouraged to plan local signing day events by inviting business partners, school administrators, teachers, elected officials, SkillsUSA alumni, family and friends to honor students signing “letters of intent” for a job offer, apprenticeship or advanced technical training.

This year, students who plan to participate must register themselves online. Registration opens on Feb. 24. The deadline to register is April 24. 

A digital toolkit of resources will be provided to advisors to assist them with planning their local chapter event. The toolkit will include an event logo, an invitation template, social media posts, a sample press release, thank you notes and an event planning checklist. A SkillsUSA National Signing Day table runner will be shipped to each chapter that registers by Friday, April 24. SkillsUSA National Signing Day merchandise bundles will be available for advisors to purchase for ease of event planning.

Watch for more information as plans develop. Additional details will be available here: www.skillsusa.org/events-training/national-signing-day/.

If you have questions, contact Kim Hegedus at khegedus@skillsusa.org or 317-544-8750.

Chapter Charter Certificates Make Great Recognition

Have you established new SkillsUSA chapters in your state this year? State leadership and skills conferences provide the perfect opportunity to recognize newly formed chapters during your general session or awards ceremony. To request middle-school, high-school or college/postsecondary chapter charter certificates, complete this form: https://skillsusa.wufoo.com/forms/chapter-charter-request-form/. 

Advisor of the Year Submissions Open

The SkillsUSA Advisor of the Year program recognizes professional members who actualize the organization’s mission of empowering students. A SkillsUSA chapter is only successful with the support of a dedicated advisor who intentionally integrates the SkillsUSA Framework and ensures students can demonstrate and articulate the skills they have developed.

Each state is eligible to name. an Advisor of the Year. State Advisors of the Year advance to the regional competition. At the National Leadership and Skills Conference, the five regional winners will be interviewed. All five will be recognized and a national winner will be announced at the Opening Ceremony. The deadline to submit state-level recipients is April 1.


Application Areas:

  • Philosophy on CTE and SkillsUSA Framework skill development
  • Intentional SkillsUSA Framework integration into school and chapter
  • Communication of SkillsUSA Framework skill development

For more information and resources, please visit the state director website.

If you have questions, contact Taryn Zeigler at tzeigler@skillsusa.org.

State-Level Awards Funded for Advisor of the Year

State SkillsUSA directors: A grant to the SkillsUSA Foundation from Toyota will fund your state Advisor of the Year (AOY) awards. Each state may order one award for a secondary AOY and one award for a postsecondary AOY, if you award it.

To order your AOY award, send an email request to Kim DeVenuto from the SkillsUSA Store at KDeVenuto@egroupengage.com. Be sure to include the following information in your email:

  • Item: SkillsUSA State Advisor of the Year Award
  • The full name of the advisor to be honored
  • Your state association
  • Your shipping address (no P.O. boxes, please)
  • The date by which you need your award delivered

Awards are custom and shipped directly from the manufacturer so please allow three weeks for delivery. The SkillsUSA Foundation will pay the invoice for your award, including shipping. 

SkillsUSA Scholarship Opportunities Now Open for Applications 

Applications for several scholarships are now open to benefit SkillsUSA students in pursuit of higher education or certification in their chosen field.  Help spread the word so SkillsUSA students can take full advantage of these opportunities:

For additional scholarship information, continually check the website at: www.skillsusa.org/membership-resources/scholarships-financial-aid/.

Last Call for Talented Singers 

SkillsUSA is still seeking a talented student or adult member to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the Opening Ceremony of the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference on June 23, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. Auditions must be received by Feb. 3. SkillsUSA does not pay travel expenses for the selected singer to attend the national conference.

To audition, submit a video of yourself singing the national anthem: https://skillsusa.wufoo.com/forms/national-anthem-auditions/. 

Deadline Approaching for Conference Pin and T-Shirt Challenge

Feb. 5 is the final deadline to enter the SkillsUSA National Conference Pin and T-shirt Design Challenge. This challenge is open to all paid student members of SkillsUSA and is a great way to have a student and advisor from your state recognized on stage at the national conference. Entries must be received (not postmarked) by Feb. 5. Rules are posted on the SkillsUSA website at: www.skillsusa.org/competitions/pin-design-challenge/. 

Nominations Sought for Honorary Life Membership and Outstanding Career and Technical Educator

If you would like to nominate someone for SkillsUSA’s national Honorary Life Membership or Outstanding Career and Technical Educator, please complete the online application. The deadline is Feb. 15.

If you have questions, contact Laura Rauch at lrauch@skillsusa.org or 703-737-0619.

Channellock Continues Trade School Trade-Up Competition

Now in its third year, Channellock, Inc.’s Trade School Trade-Up Competition continues to help close the national skills gap by funding initiatives and tools that will support America’s future tradesmen and women. This year, CHANNELLOCK® will now sponsor two competitions —  one in the spring and the other in the fall.

How to enter
The competition is open to students in plumbing, HVAC, welding, automotive and electrical trades and why your program deserves a classroom makeover. To submit an entry, get a group together and create a short video showcasing your team’s skills in action. Tell what makes your program special. Your entry will be graded on passion, content and need.

Jan. 2: Submission period began
Feb. 12: Submission due date
Feb. 19: Top 3 announced
Feb. 20-22: Voting through Facebook
Feb. 23: Winners announced

1st Place: $5,000 cash prize, CHANNELLOCK® tools for team members and classroom and a classroom makeover with CHANNELLOCK BLUE® wall paint and fatheads
2nd Place: $2,500 cash prize, CHANNELLOCK® tools for all team members and their classroom
3rd Place: $1,000 cash prize, CHANNELLOCK® tools for all team members and their classroom

Learn more about the competition and how to enter at: www.channellock.com/tradeup.

Trade Travelers Tour

New in 2020, CHANNELLOCK® will kick off its first ever Trade Travelers Tour, embarking on a journey to visit top trade schools across the country. The tour will begin in Channellock’s hometown of Meadville, Pa., at the Crawford County Career and Technical Center, then travel to leading trade schools across the country, ending with a grand finale celebration at the spring trade school trade-up winner’s school. During the tour, representatives will give away tool sets and offer educational opportunities where students can learn from seasoned experts in their chosen trade. 

National Youth Safety Video Contest Still Open 

CareerSafe sponsors an annual National Youth Safety Video Contest. Students across the country are invited to create a two-minute video demonstrating workplace safety. All submissions should be sent to CareerSafe by March 1. The winning students will receive a SkillsUSA prize pack and a scholarship up to $2,500, and the winning school will receive a prize up to $5,000. For more information, visit the CareerSafe website at: www.careersafeonline.com. 

Earn Recognition for Service Through Presidential Honors 

Once again at national conference, SkillsUSA will recognize individuals or chapters with the President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA). This presidential honor is an award that recognizes the valuable contributions of volunteers across the country who are answering a national call to serve others through their current activities or lifetime efforts.

This program allows SkillsUSA advisors, students and registered alumni to earn recognition for their community service and volunteer activities. With SkillsUSA’s focus on community service, advisors and students have already met the requirements to receive the award. To qualify, SkillsUSA members, advisors or alumni must submit a record of service hours.

For details on qualifying hours and requirements, visit: www.skillsusa.org/membership-resources/awards/presidents-volunteer-service-award. Applications must be received by March 29 for recognition at the 2020 NLSC. 

Gain National Attention for Student Mentoring 

When a SkillsUSA chapter mentors an elementary- or middle-school classroom, it helps younger students imagine careers and helps older students practice their skills.

Student2Student recognizes SkillsUSA chapters that are involved in a mentoring program in their communities. To enter, submit your mentoring project plan, description and outcomes. The winning chapter will be recognized at the National Leadership and Skills Conference and in its Awards and Recognition book. In addition, the winner will be invited to present at SkillsUSA University. All entries must be submitted by April 1. Winners are announced in May. You can download the Mentoring Guide: http://skillsusa.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Mentoring-Guide-rev.2015.pdf.

For more information, contact Gayle Silvey at gsilvey@skillsusa.org or visit: www.skillsusa.org/educators/mentrecog.shtml.

Due Dates

Feb. 1: Marsha Daves Memorial Scholarship applications due
Feb. 3: Proposed Bylaw amendments due in writing
Feb. 3 : National Anthem audition videos due
Feb. 5 : National Conference Pin and T-Shirt Design entries due
Feb. 12: Channellock, Inc.’s Trade School Trade-Up Competition entries Due
Feb. 15: Honorary Life and Outstanding Career and Technical Educator nominations due
March 1: SkillsUSA National Membership Deadline
March 1: National Youth Safety Video Contest submissions due
March 29: President’s Volunteer Service Award applications due
April 1: Student2Student entries due
April 1: Advisor of the Year submissions due
April 1: National Technical Honor Society applications due
April 15: Sharon Melton Myers Memorial Scholarship applications due
April 24: Registration deadline for National Signing Day
June 1: National Officer Candidate applications due

National Staff Travel

Feb 3: Gadsden, Ala./Meeting at Gadsden State Community College/Gene Dudley
Feb. 4: Atlanta/Guam Dept. of Education Visit with Cross Keys High School/Gene Dudley
Feb. 4: Washington, D.C./Advocacy Day activities/Chelle Travis and select staff
Feb. 5: Washington, D.C./Visit to the Embassy of France/Chelle Travis and select staff
Feb. 10-13: Atlanta/2021 National Leadership and Skills Conference visit/select national staff
Feb. 13-15: Myrtle Beach, S.C./South Carolina Technical Education Association Conference/Gene Dudley
Feb. 19-20: Wichita, Kan./NC3 Signing Day/Chelle Travis

March 10-13: Atlanta/SkillsUSA Board of Directors’ Meeting/select staff
March 11-13: Atlanta/Georgia State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
March 21-22: Manchester, N.H./New Hampshire State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
March 31-April 3: Las Vegas/International Wireless Communications Expo/Jim Kregiel

April 1-3: Yakima, Wash./Washington State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 6-10: Colorado Springs, Colo./Colorado State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 19-20: Tulsa, Okla./Oklahoma State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 21-22: Chattanooga, Tenn./Tennessee State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 24: Syracuse, N.Y./New York State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 25: Roanoke, Va./Virginia State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis
April 28-29: Madison, Wis./Wisconsin State Leadership and Skills Conference/Chelle Travis