Event to acknowledge, honor and encourage high school seniors who have chosen to pursue a career as a professional in the skilled trades
Leesburg, Va. — SkillsUSA and Klein Tools are excited to announce SkillsUSA National Signing Day 2019, celebrating thousands of high school seniors who are dedicated to pursuing a career in the skilled trades. On May 8, 2019, this inaugural nationwide program will recognize students — in hundreds of SkillsUSA chapters in high schools across the country — for their dedication to pursuing a career in residential wiring, building trades and renovations, HVAC or plumbing. This year, there will be 300 schools and 3,000 students participating.
On SkillsUSA National Signing Day, high school seniors will be recognized by their school administrators, teachers, elected officials, SkillsUSA advisors, family and friends for making the decision to pursue a career in the skilled trades, a sector in high demand that continues to face an immense labor shortage. In a style similar to “National Signing Day” events for high-school student athletes, seniors will be applauded as they announce their career plans and will sign “letters of intent” for a job offer, apprenticeship or advanced technical training. Throughout the day, tradespeople and others across the nation can participate and share their thoughts of encouragement as Klein Tools hosts live “look-ins” from schools on the company’s Facebook page.
NFL Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is a spokesperson for SkillsUSA National Signing Day. Jimmy along with his father, Tony Garoppolo, a recently retired career electrician, will visit the Silicon Valley Career Technical Education Center in San Jose, California on May 8, one of the 300 SkillsUSA schools participating this year. “As an electrician, I’m excited to be part of this first-ever special day and spread the message on how satisfying a longtime career in the skilled trades can be,” says Tony Garoppolo. “I remember when Jimmy participated in his signing day and the excitement that came with it. It is great to partner with SkillsUSA and Klein Tools to support aspiring students joining the trades. These students should be especially proud as they sign their letters of intent and prepare for their lifelong careers.”
Klein Tools, title sponsor of SkillsUSA National Signing Day 2019, is an over-160-year-old American manufacturer who designs, develops and manufactures premium-quality, professional-grade hand tools used in the construction, electrical, utility and mining industries. Klein Tools’ commitment to American manufacturing runs deep — with nine facilities in seven states, including its corporate office and world-class forging facility in suburban Chicago, and its state-of-the-art manufacturing headquarters in Mansfield, Texas.
“We want to thank Klein Tools for sponsoring our first SkillsUSA National Signing Day in May,” says SkillsUSA’s executive director, Tim Lawrence. “This program celebrates high school students nationwide and acknowledges their commitment to a fulfilling and rewarding career in the skilled trades. Because of Klein Tool’s support, SkillsUSA National Signing Day will help generate more awareness among students considering the skilled workforce as a career option.”
“We are thrilled to partner with SkillsUSA on this first-ever national program saluting high school seniors excited to start their career in the skilled trades. SkillsUSA predicts that by 2025, there will be 3.4 million new manufacturing jobs available. Right now, six out of 10 open skilled production positions are unfilled due to the shortage of workers,” says Klein Tools Co-President Mark Klein. “Klein Tools is committed to strengthening the skilled workforce. By empowering the next generation of workers to enter the trades, we can help close the skills gap, while presenting robust career opportunities for young workers who enjoy challenging work that offers stability and long-term benefits.”
During SkillsUSA National Signing Day, participating students will receive a Klein Tools signing kit, which includes a hat, T-shirt and a pair of Klein Tools pliers. Additionally, students will also have the opportunity to purchase a full Klein Tools starter set at a discounted price, thanks to Home Depot Inc. “This generosity reinforces the Home Depot’s commitment to outfitting and training 20,000 new tradespeople by 2028 to help fill the U.S. labor and skills gap,” added Klein.
More information on SkillsUSA National Signing Day events and participating schools can be found at: www.kleintools.com/nsd.
SkillsUSA is a vital solution to the growing U.S. skills gap. SkillsUSA empowers its members to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens as it improves the quality of our nation’s future skilled workforce. The nonprofit partnership of students, instructors and industry ensures America has the skilled workforce it needs to stay competitive. SkillsUSA helps every student excel through the development of SkillsUSA Framework skills that include personal, workplace and technical skills grounded in academics. The association serves more than 360,000-member students and instructors per year in middle schools, high schools and colleges. This diverse talent pipeline covers 130 trade, technical and skilled service occupations, the majority STEM-related. More than 600 corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions actively support SkillsUSA at the national level. Local, state and national championships are designed and judged by industry to set relevant standards for career and technical education and provide recognition opportunities for students. SkillsUSA programs also help to establish industry standards for job skill training in the lab and classroom and promote community service. SkillsUSA is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and is cited as a “successful model of employer-driven youth development training program” by the U.S. Department of Labor. SkillsUSA offers technical skill assessments and workplace credentials through the SkillsUSA Career Essentials program, a cutting-edge solution that defines, implements and measures career readiness skills for students. For more information, visit: www.skillsusa.org.
About Klein Tools
Since 1857 Klein Tools, a family-owned and operated company, has been designing, developing and manufacturing premium-quality, professional-grade hand tools. The majority of Klein tools are manufactured in plants throughout the United States and are the No. 1 choice among professional electricians and other tradespeople. Klein is a registered trademark of Klein Tools, Inc. For more information, visit: www.kleintools.com.
Jane A. DeShong Short, Program Manager
Karen Kitzel, Associate Director