SkillsUSA Names Top Three “Models of Excellence” Chapters

Published: June 28, 2023
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Jane Short or Karen Kitzel SkillsUSA 703-777-8810 or

Winners Honored for Local Chapter Programming

Leesburg, Va., June 28, 2023 — SkillsUSA announced its top three chapters for the 2023 Models of Excellence (MOE) program during the Awards Session at the National Leadership & Skills Conference (NLSC) in Atlanta on Friday, June 23. The three winners were selected from a talented field of 24 finalists from around the nation, each representing the application of the SkillsUSA Framework in the Personal, Workplace and Technical skills demanded by industry. Winners for 2023 are New Madrid County R-1 Technical Skills Center of Missouri (Personal Skills); Lynn Vocational Technical Institute of Massachusetts (Workplace Skills); and Upper Valley Career Center of Ohio (Technical Skills). Models of Excellence (MOE) represents the top tier of the SkillsUSA Chapter Excellence Program (CEP). This program, in its ninth year, recognizes achievement as it relates to the successful integration of the Framework in a chapter’s SkillsUSA Program of Work, including community service and leadership activities. By using the Framework as a guide, chapters create programming based on high-demand employability skills within the Personal, Workplace and Technical Skills areas. These industry-identified employability skills include decision making, teamwork, integrity, work ethic, communication, responsibility, health and safety, and others that define the chapter’s approach to influence student understanding and enable measurable outcomes. According to Chelle Travis, executive director of SkillsUSA, “Our MOE chapters integrate Framework learning into every activity, enabling them to actuate high-demand skills while positively influencing their communities. The excellence achieved by these chapters reflects the grassroots approach of SkillsUSA in preparing members to be job ready, day one. Engaging members at the chapter level is paramount to their future success, and in filling the skills gap with highly qualified and skilled professionals.” To be selected as Model of Excellence, each chapter first achieved SkillsUSA “Gold Chapter” status through an application process. A committee then identified the top chapters nationally for each SkillsUSA Framework component, resulting in 24 finalists. All finalists had to give a presentation followed by a Q&A session to a panel of business and industry judges. Here’s how the winning chapters integrated the SkillsUSA Framework in their activities: Personal Skills Students at New Madrid County R-1 Technical Skills Center in Missouri were honored for Personal Skills as they focused on the Framework skill of Responsibility through community service initiatives ranging from building beds and benches to purchasing bicycles and collecting hygiene supplies. Members undertook safety training, made committee assignments, incorporated community collaboration and managed worksite logistics. Weekly classroom lessons fostered an individual understanding of responsibility, including the value of showing up on time, completing tasks and being accountable to others. Learning assessments measured growth, directly translating to student responsiveness during each project phase. Partnerships with advisory board stakeholders, local businesses and first responders led to a community-wide impact. Workplace Skills Lynn Vocational Technical Institute in Massachusetts topped the Workplace Skills category by using the Framework skill of Planning, Organizing and Management to deliver a financial wealth expo to the greater community. Members worked alongside SkillsUSA alumni to create a structured, interactive format to present relevant financial topics such as employability skills, banking, budgeting, credit and investing. Students attained sponsorships, reserved classrooms and technology, scheduled keynote speakers and coordinated panel discussions. Online promotion led to a well-attended event despite bad weather. SkillsUSA bucks were distributed to enhance learning, leaving participants excited and prepared to use their new financial insight. Technical Skills Grounded in Academics SkillsUSA members from the Upper Valley Career Center in Ohio were recognized for Technical Skills as they applied job specific skills to improve food access by building and stocking five small food pantries with non-perishables, clothing and hygiene items. Students created a budget, obtained building supplies, designed and assembled the pantries and installed them in designated areas. Collaboration among multiple technical programs resulted in grants to purchase construction materials and food items, as well as an ongoing schedule to maintain pantry inventory. From the design and construction to the finishing touches, each member assumed a meaningful role, connecting their technical skills application to service of others. Learn more about the SkillsUSA Chapter Excellence Program:

About SkillsUSA

SkillsUSA is America’s proud champion of the skilled trades. It’s a student-led partnership of education and industry that’s building the skilled workforce our nation depends on with graduates who are career ready, day one. Representing nearly 380,000 career and technical education students and teachers, SkillsUSA chapters thrive in middle schools, high schools and college/postsecondary institutions nationwide. SkillsUSA’s mission empowers students to become skilled professionals, career-ready leaders and responsible community members. That mission is accomplished through the SkillsUSA Framework of Personal Skills, Workplace Skills and Technical Skills Grounded in Academics, which is integrated into the classroom curriculum. Through Framework instruction, students develop the character-shaping leadership skills — teamwork, communication, professionalism and more — that successful careers and lives demand. At the same time, students hone their high-level technical skills against current industry standards in more than 130 skilled trade areas, from 3-D Animation to Welding. The result? Focused, confident and highly skilled graduates who are ready to work, ready to lead and ready to make a difference in our schools, workplaces and communities. A vital solution to the skills gap, where more in-demand skilled trades positions are available than qualified professionals to fill them, SkillsUSA has served over 14 million difference-making members since 1965. To learn more, visit

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For more information about SkillsUSA, contact:

Jane A. DeShong Short

Senior Manager, Public Relations/Communications

Karen Kitzel

Associate Director, Communications

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