Awards Programs

Recognizing Excellence


SkillsUSA offers a dazzling array of awards for its students and advisors, underscoring their commitment to promoting excellence and leadership in career and technical education. From distinguished personal honors like the Advisor of the Year to individual and collective achievements like the President’s Volunteer Service award, these recognitions highlight the dedication, skill, and community spirit that define SkillsUSA.

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), in partnership with SkillsUSA, is seeking nominations for the National Trade and Industrial Education Division Awards to be presented during the annual ACTE CareerTech VISION conference. (Please note the Trade and Industrial VISION Awards are separate from the ACTE Excellence Awards.)

This year’s conference will be held Nov. 29 – Dec. 2, 2023 in Phoenix, Az. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 1, 2023. Qualified individuals may be nominated in the following categories, and you may nominate yourself. (If you nominate someone other than yourself, please be sure to notify the nominee.) Click on each award for the nomination forms:

For additional conference information, please visit ACTE CareerTech VISION 2023.

Photo of the 2024-25 Advisors of the Year

SkillsUSA Advisor of the Year Award honors SkillsUSA’s most dedicated career and technical education instructors. These talented instructors serve SkillsUSA advisors and embrace the SkillsUSA Framework and national programming to create career-ready graduates and opportunities for every member. States hold an Advisor of the Year competition, and the state winners advance to the regional competition. The top five regional winners are interviewed during the national conference, and a national Advisor of the Year is selected.

For more information, please contact your state association director.

The 2024 regional Advisors of the Year are:

Angel Mead
(Region 1, New York)
Angel Mead, a work-based learning coordinator and adult cosmetology instructor at Broome Tioga BOCES in Binghamton, N.Y., was introduced to SkillsUSA in 1980 when it was the Vocational Industrial Clubs of America (VICA). Her teacher, Vivian Lateer, encouraged her to become a member and a student leader in their local chapter. After graduation she asked Mead to judge the cosmetology contests at both the regional and state levels. Once Mead started working for BOCES, she immediately became a VICA advisor and took over the lead advisor role in 1992. Working in many different roles during her teaching career, she has been a judge at the regional, state and national levels, cosmetology contest chair at both the regional and state levels, cluster manager at the state level, and Area 2 secretary. Becoming a state officer advisor has been one of her most rewarding roles. In that role, she was able to not only work closely with her own students but meet and work with other young leaders and their advisors from across New York. Mead is a licensed hairstylist and teacher, has owned her own salon and is a New York state board site supervisor for both cosmetology and nail examinations. She says the beliefs of the SkillsUSA organization, the SkillsUSA Framework and the Essential Elements are the beliefs she lives by. She says, “Our goal as educators should be to lead by example and teach our students how to become ethical, adaptable and forward-thinking employees.” Mead is married, has two children, two daughters-in-law and a granddaughter.

Allison Terry
(Region 2, South Carolina)
Allison Terry, an electrical instructor and program coordinator for building construction trades at York Technical College in Rock Hill, S.C., is dedicated to cultivating a learning environment that imparts technical skills and nurtures the growth of confident, capable leaders ready to make their mark in the industry. Growing up in Houma, La., Terry’s journey with electricity and SkillsUSA started at Louis Miller Terrebonne Career and Technical High School where she took a class in electricity and served as SkillsUSA state treasurer during the 2002-03 school year. As a state officer, she had the opportunity to attend the SkillsUSA national competition where she had a life-changing informal interview with Wayne J. Griffin Electric representatives. The day she turned 18, she received a call from them inviting her to visit their main office in Holliston, Mass., where she met Wayne Griffin himself and was hired. Terry completed a four-year apprenticeship program, marking a significant milestone as the first female to complete the NCCER program for Griffin Electric in Charlotte, N.C. She became a licensed electrician, NCCER master electrical trainer, foreperson and project engineer. Leading the inaugural SkillsUSA chapter at York Technical College has been her most gratifying aspect of her journey so far. Terry says, “This role has provided me with immense fulfillment. By incorporating the Essential Elements into hands-on learning experiences, mentorship initiatives and projects, I provide students with opportunities to acquire technical expertise and develop the leadership skills and personal qualities essential for success.”

Tiffany Beard
(Region 3, Illinois)
Tiffany Beard, a career and technical education and Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Engineering instructor at Morton (Ill.) High School, has nearly two decades of experience in intermediate and secondary education. After 14 years teaching middle school science and PLTW classes, Beard began her tenure at Morton High School, where she teaches five courses in the PLTW Engineering pathway, including computer integrated manufacturing, CAD engineering design, civil engineering and architecture and aerospace engineering. As a SkillsUSA advisor, her efforts have seen the chapter’s Program of Work significantly increase, expanded the number of training programs that are active with SkillsUSA, and her recruitment and engagement efforts have more than doubled the number of active chapter members. In her five years at Morton High School, she has proven to be a dedicated educator who is passionate about empowering her students to achieve success in their academic and career paths. Beard is committed to providing her students with real-world experiences, preparing them to become skilled and employable individuals in their respective fields. What sets her apart from other educators is her dedication to her student’s holistic development. She not only focuses on their academic progress, but also on their personal growth. She is a mentor and a role model, guiding her students toward becoming well-rounded individuals and her approach has helped students develop self-confidence, leadership skills and a strong work ethic. She says, “Cultivating the Essential Elements within students is critical, serving as a foundation for preparing for the demands of their future employment.”

Benjamin Applegate
(Region 4, Iowa)
Benjamine Applegate is a SkillsUSA advisor and an industrial technology instructor at Waverly-Shell Rock High School in Waverly, Iowa. Applegate is in his fifth year of teaching in Waverly after spending his first two years in a different school district in Iowa. He believes that career and technical education is invaluable in developing people to meet the needs of the modern workforce and that it bridges the gap between academic learning and the practical skills needed for success in the real world. He also believes that developing the Essential Elements of the SkillsUSA Framework in students is paramount for their holistic growth and future success. “These elements, compassing Personal, Workplace and Technical Skills, form the foundation for thriving in both career and life,” he says. “We make sure to use the SkillsUSA Framework in all of our chapter activities.” He added SkillsUSA to the industrial technology program two years ago after seeing firsthand the benefits of student organizations and the growth potential for students. In the first year, there were five students interested and in the second year, there were 16. This year, the chapter grew to more than 80 students. “Every student has bought into the SkillsUSA Framework and the potential in SkillsUSA,” he says. This year, Applegate has also been nominated for Ag Teacher of the Year in Iowa as well as the Northeast Iowa STEM Educator of the Year. He also serves on the SkillsUSA Iowa Board of Directors. When not working, he likes spending time with his wife, Kristen, and their two pets — Winston, a pug and Campbell, a fluffy orange cat.

Joshua Ronstadt
(Region 5, Arizona)
Joshua Ronstadt has been a SkillsUSA advisor and Construction Technologies and Architectural Drawing instructor at Canyon del Oro High School in Oro Valley, Ariz. for eight years. He holds a CTE Teaching Certificate and is a 20-year Master Craftsman, and NCCER Certified Craft instructor. Ronstadt has a passion for designing and building and believes it is a gift to be able to use your mind and your hands to create something from raw materials, starting with an idea, then a two-dimensional drawing and becoming finally a three-dimensional object. Ronstadt’s family owned a pizza restaurant where he worked starting at age 13. As a young adult, he found a job with a high-end acoustic guitar company and was trained in guitar manufacturing and repair. In 2016, he found his calling in teaching young people the value of craftsmanship, integrity and a good work ethic. He says teaching is an extreme sport. “There are lots of obstacles to face, but in the end, successfully completing the challenge is very rewarding. There is nothing like making a difference in a young person’s life.” Ronstadt says he is honored to teach professionalism, work ethic, collaboration, resume building and more. “These are life skills that students can take with them for building character, problem solving and adding value to who they are as contributing members of society.” The SkillsUSA Essential Elements align perfectly with his class philosophy. In his free time, Ronstadt enjoys spending time with his wife of 29 years, his two children and three grandchildren.

National-Level Recognition of  Lifetime Achievers Investing in Youth Development

Award Criteria
The SkillsUSA Hall of Champions Award is an honor bestowed upon those who have dedicated their lives, at a national level, to helping youth develop the components of the SkillsUSA Framework (personal, workplace and technical skills grounded in academics) necessary to be successful in a changing world. Their legacy on SkillsUSA will continue far beyond their career.

Hall of Champions Award
A candidate may be nominated by a state SkillsUSA association director or current or past SkillsUSA board member, SkillsUSA HQ staff member, SkillsUSA chapter, stakeholder, alumni, or other leaders in the organization. The nomination form must be accompanied by up to five (5) letters of support from SkillsUSA members, CTE instructors, SkillsUSA advisors, parents, advisory committee members, etc. The letters of support must demonstrate the nominee’s breadth and depth of impact on youth development within the SkillsUSA Framework.

Honorees to be recognized as Hall of Champion Award recipients must have performed service, at a national level, that had great impact on youth development in the components of the SkillsUSA Framework: personal, workplace and technical skills grounded in academics. It is not necessary for nominees to have already received the state-level Hall of Champions Award.

General Information
The deadline for returning the application is Feb. 14 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Apply online!

One of SkillsUSA’s highest recognitions is the Honorary Life Membership. Each year, it is awarded to individuals for their outstanding service that advances the mission and values of the SkillsUSA organization over an extended period.   Individuals are nominated for this award by their peers and administrators.

Eligible individuals for this award will:

  • Be a current or retired SkillsUSA professional member or partner of SkillsUSA
  • Have a proven track record of supporting the mission of SkillsUSA at the local, regional, state and/or national levels.

Educators are selected by a committee of SkillsUSA’s Board of Directors based on:

  • Their years of involvement with SkillsUSA
  • Significant CTE contributions at local, state, and national levels

Nominations will be accepted beginning December 1 and will close on February 14.

Click here for the Honorary Life Nomination Form.

Each year, SkillsUSA is proud to honor individual educators for their commitment and dedication to their students, Career and Technical Education and to SkillsUSA. Individuals can be nominated for this award by their peers, co-workers, supervisors, or students.

Eligible educators for this award will:

  • Have at least three years of teaching experience.
  • Be a registered professional member of SkillsUSA.

Educators are selected by a committee of SkillsUSA’s Board of Directors based on:

  • Proven commitment to student success
  • CTE contributions at the local, state and national levels
  • Significant educational positions held

Nominations will be accepted beginning December 1 and will close on February 14.

Click here for the Outstanding CTE nomination form.

SkillsUSA is one of thousands of certifying organizations that participate in the national PVSA program, which is administered by Americorps and Point of Light Foundation. SkillsUSA can only process applications of students who enrolled in a SkillsUSA classroom as part of a CTE class at their middle school, high school, or college. The information on this webpage is for SkillsUSA students, advisors, and state directors only. Only the applications of registered, active SkillsUSA students will be processed by SkillsUSA.

If you are a volunteer, but you do not belong to a SkillsUSA chapter as part of your middle school, high school, or college, visit the official PVSA website for more information:

The Presidential Volunteer Service Award
The Presidential Volunteer Service Award (PVSA) is a national honor offered in recognition of sustained volunteer service. As a certifying organization of the PVSA, SkillsUSA members may apply to receive the PVSA through the SkillsUSA national office for volunteer hours served over a 12-month period. Recipients receive:

  • an official lapel pin reflecting the Bronze, Silver, or Gold service level.
  • a personalized certificate of achievement.
  • a congratulatory letter from the President of the United States.

PVSA recipients frequently include this honor on their resume and on college, scholarship, and job applications!

Award Levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold

Active SkillsUSA members (students) can apply to receive a PVSA individual award. SkillsUSA Chapters may use their collective volunteer hours to apply to receive the PVSA team award. Award levels are determined by two criteria:

  1. The number of hours served
  2. Student’s reported age as detailed in the chart below.
    Note: SkillsUSA Chapter award levels are determined via the “Families / Groups / Teams” criteria in the chart below.

Awards Levels – Service Benchmark

* The age category is determined by the age the student was for at least 7 months within the calendar year. For example, if the student was 16 for seven (7) months within the year in question, that person would qualify within the 16-25 age group.  

The application deadline for the 2023-2024 year is March 31, 2024 at 11:59 PM EST. Faxed, mailed, and emailed entries will not be processed. Verified volunteer-service hours must occur in a consecutive 12-month period between January 1, 2023 and March 31, 2024.

Apply Now ButtonRequired Application Criteria:

  • Applications must be complete and include all required documentation in a legible format.
  • All applications must include proof of current SkillsUSA membership. Acceptable documents include a SkillsUSA membership card(s) or the student(s) name(s) indicated on the SkillsUSA Chapter Roster.
  • All applications must include a volunteer service log (individual award) or timesheet (chapter award) that details:
    • Each date the applicant performed volunteer service, including location of service.
    • The total number of hours for each date of volunteer service.
    • No more than fifty (50) volunteers may contribute hours towards a chapter award.
  • The application requires a letter from each organization that appears on the applicant’s service log or time sheet that verifies the applicant’s volunteer service. The letter must:
    • Be typed on the organization’s letterhead.
    • Name the applicant.
    • Include the applicant’s term of service and total hours contributed to the organization.
    • Be signed by a representative of the organization for which volunteer service was performed.
      Example: “This letter is to certify that ____________ performed ___ hours of service for Organization Name between the dates of ______ and _______.”
  • The application (both individuals and chapters) must include a Letter of Nomination from a SkillsUSA advisor, instructor, or SkillsUSA state director on organizational letterhead that affirms the student-applicant has performed the necessary volunteer hours to be considered for the PVSA.


  • Ineligible volunteer hours include hours spent meeting, driving, sleeping, or off-duty.
  • In accordance with AmeriCorps® and the Point of Light Foundation, ineligible service includes donating funds, political lobbying, religious instruction, conducting a worship service, proselytizing, court-ordered community service, service of only family members.
  • An applicant’s volunteer hours must be applied to an individual award OR a chapter award, but not both.
  • Hours served fulfilling responsibilities as a SkillsUSA local, state, or national officer are not to be included as service hours towards the PVSA.
  • SkillsUSA is both ethically and legally bound to honor the service hour and award levels as set forth by the PVSA.
  • Missing data (example: claimed volunteer hours not reflected on time sheet) or unverified data (example: nomination or verification letter on non-letterhead) may result in rejection of the application, or receipt of the PVSA at a lower award level. Only service hours that are appropriately documented and verified will be counted. Before submitting the application, ensure that all data is correct, fully documented, and verified.

If you have questions:

SkillsUSA members, advisors and state directors:
Contact Marcia Strickland at

All others interested in the PVSA should visit the PVSA website at:

2023-24 Recipients

The following people have qualified to receive the President’s Service Award in 2023-24:


Gold Recipients

  • Valley Academy for Career and Technology Education – Law Enforcement and Public Safety Program – Chapter Award
  • Desert Star Academy Graphic Communications – Chapter Award
  • Valley Academy for Career and Technology Education (Bldg Trades & Renovations) – Chapter Award 


Gold Recipients

  • Dinuba High School – Chapter Award

Bronze Recipients

  • Kathy Truong, Donald Jordan Intermediate School


Gold Recipients

  • Madison Kauska, Leesburg High School


Gold Recipients

  • Gwinnett Technical College – Give Back Group – Chapter Award
  • Gwinnett Technical College – Kindness Crew – Chapter Award
  • Gwinnett Technical College – Service Squad – Chapter Award

Silver Recipients

  • Kayden Cash, Gwinnett Technical College SkillsUSA Club


Gold Recipients

  • Akram Mchiti, Essex North Shore Agricultural & Technical School
  • Thomas Marshall, Greater Lowell Technical High School
  • Lynn Vocational Technical Institute – Chapter Award
  • Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School – Chapter Award

Silver Recipients

  • Natalie DeLano, Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School
  • Dayna Mbugua, Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School
  • Alondra Nieves, Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical Academy
  • Matthew Kelly, J.P. Keefe Technical High School
  • Kallie Allen, Blackstone Valley Vocational Technical High School

Bronze Recipients

  • Emma Shaker, Diman Regional Vocational Technical School
  • Julian Cardoso, Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School
  • Kayla Matheiu, Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School
  • Jordan Melo, Greater New Bedford RVTHS
  • Alaney Murphy, Taunton High School


Bronze Recipients

  • Emily Luo, Mounds View SkillsUSA


Gold Recipients

  • Luke Frassel, Jack Britt High School


Gold Recipients

  • Lily Boguslavsky, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Jennifer Levy, Gloucester County Institute of Technology
  • Malavika Malanthara, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Sree Isukapalli, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Vaanya Salwan, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Jessy Dong, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Desiree Okonkwo, Hudson County School of Technology
  • Dominic Mercado, Cumberland County Technical Education Center

Silver Recipients

  • Max Chen, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences

Bronze Recipients

  • Kavya Shah, Somerset County Academy for Health and Medical Sciences
  • Victoria Okonkwo, Hudson County School of Technology


Gold Recipients

  • Green Valley High School – Chapter Award


Gold Recipients

  • Aviation Career & Technical Education High School – Chapter Award
  • Thomas A Edison Career & Technical High School – Chapter Award
  • Mikeal Hawkins, Oneida Herkimer Madison BOCES
  • Ulster BOCES – Chapter Award

Silver Recipients

  • Maggie O’Donnell, Oneida Herkimer Madison BOCES

Bronze Recipients

  • Jocelyn Colon, Nassau BOCES GC Tech


Gold Recipients

  • Jack Adkins, Auburn Career Center
  • Ryan Nelson, Auburn Career Center


Gold Recipients

  • Gavin Gabel, Tulsa Tech High School Extension Programs


Bronze Recipients

  • Caitlin Lozeau, Burrillville High School


Gold Recipients

  • Tennessee College of Applied Technology Northwest – Building Construction Technology Program – Chapter Award


Gold Recipients

  • Grand Prairie High School – Chapter Award
  • Maribel Rodriguez, Grand Prairie High School

Bronze Recipients

  • Hannah Thomas, Wylie High School SkillsUSA


Gold Recipients

  • Jamie Bero, Putnam Career & Technical Center