SkillsUSA is the Foundation for Success

Nationwide Impact

A student who once hid quietly in the back of the class finds a confidence he never knew he had … and now will never lose. Another, once unsure of her future goals, discovers a passion for a specific skill that will lead to a fulfilling, in-demand career. A teacher, struggling to provide students with real-world connections to their classroom, transforms his curriculum into an engaging model of a high-functioning workplace. An industry representative, desperate for entry-level employees to meet her company’s growing needs, taps into a talent pipeline of career-ready applicants ready to bridge that skills gap. These moments — and so many more — happen every day across our nation thanks to SkillsUSA involvement.

SkillsUSA changes classrooms. SkillsUSA changes workplaces. SkillsUSA changes lives.

The employability and leadership skills — and just the motivation and the confidence you get from involvement with SkillsUSA — is amazing. It helped me to have a feeling of worth.

— Brice Harader-Pate, Former SkillsUSA Student

SkillsUSA serves students in middle school, high school and college/postsecondary chapters across the nation, and those chapters are student-led. While each group is ultimately on the same career-ready journey, each needs specific tools and support relevant to how far along they’ve come.

SkillsUSA offers competitions, events, conferences, programs and more to help students grow their personal and professional skills through a holistic approach that’s tailored to each step up the educational ladder. The end result? Graduates who are skilled professionals, career-ready leaders and responsible community members.

Learn more about why joining SkillsUSA is one of the best decisions students at any level can make.

SkillsUSA has changed me as a teacher and incorporating SkillsUSA has enhanced my curriculum. You will not believe the life-changing difference SkillsUSA makes for students and how it can change their futures. Students come out of my program prepared for the workforce or college. It improves grades, attendance and attitude.

— Julie Ivan, SkillsUSA Advisor

SkillsUSA connects education with industry, offering new avenues for classroom support and development while ensuring that curriculum is relevant to cutting-edge standards. It keeps students motivated and engaged as they connect the classroom to the real world and their future goals. It builds administrator and community support for a teacher’s programs, provides access to a wealth of turnkey educational resources and, most importantly, helps teachers achieve the one goal that makes all the work worthwhile: seeing their students succeed as professionals and people who make a difference, just like the teachers who inspired them.

Learn more about the benefits of becoming a SkillsUSA advisor.
Learn how to join as a professional member.

SkillsUSA students are in demand and they are better equipped than anyone out there. This organization improves lives and is indeed creating a better world.

— Jim Lentz, Former CEO, Toyota Motor North America Inc.

Industry knows: The skills gap is real, and it’s a clear and present threat to America’s economic future. Hundreds of thousands of open positions exist right now in a wide variety of highly skilled, high-paying, in-demand career fields. The problem is, there aren’t enough qualified skilled professionals to fill those positions. SkillsUSA is a proven solution to the skills gap. Partnering with SkillsUSA provides access to a verified talent pipeline of career-ready, day one employees. SkillsUSA students have the technical skills industry demands, but so much more; they also have the personal and workplace skills that truly set them apart as both employees and leaders.

Through SkillsUSA, industry can influence classroom curriculum, create and judge competitions, build brand loyalty among our students and teachers, and actively recruit from the best, most highly skilled career and technical education students in the nation. SkillsUSA is also the most effective avenue that exists among students to change outdated perceptions about careers in the skilled trades and spark excitement and motivation in the next generation to pursue these fulfilling, in-demand careers.

Learn more about partnering with SkillsUSA.

Success Stories

Since 1965, SkillsUSA has been helping create millions of success stories across the nation. Read some of the latest stories on our SkillsUSA Champions Magazine digital hub, including features on students, teachers and partners; spotlights on the amazing work our chapters are doing in their communities; podcasts; the latest news and much more. Have a story of your own to share? Submit your details through this form and our editors will get back to you shortly.


Personal testimonials about how SkillsUSA changes lives always make an inspiring case for membership and support. Add some rock-solid data and statistics — like those from the reports summarized below — and an “inspiring” case becomes “open-and-shut.” Here’s some of the most recent data correlating SkillsUSA involvement — and involvement in career and technical education programs in general — with positive student outcomes.

Student Research Foundation: “The SkillsUSA Advantage”

A 2023 report from the Student Research Foundation shows that SkillsUSA members consistently outperform their peers not enrolled in a career and technical student organization (CTSO) in seven essential areas:

  1. Earning a license or certification related to their field of study
  2. Meeting potential employers
  3. Being excited about their chosen career
  4. Gaining work experience as a student
  5. Understanding the work environment
  6. Being excited about school
  7. Connecting school to the real world

Among the 27,000 high school students surveyed, this “SkillsUSA Advantage” holds true regardless of gender, race/ethnicity or socioeconomic status. SkillsUSA students also reported greater access to expanded opportunities and dramatically improved career-readiness skills.
SkillsUSA Advantage Report
SkillsUSA Advantage Asset Collection

“Career and Technical Education (CTE) Works!” Report

In 2022, the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) released a compilation of statistics related to student involvement in career and technical education programs. Sources included the National Center for Education Statistics and the U.S. Department of Education, and just some of the highlights include:

  • 77% of employers from in-demand industries report hiring an employee because of knowledge and skills gained from their career and technical education experience.
  • Despite millions of job openings around the country, 74% of employers report a persistent mismatch between the skills they need and the skills workers have.
  • High school students in career and technical education programs are more likely to be employed full time and have higher median annual earnings 8 years after graduation.
  • The average high school graduation rate for those involved in career and technical education programs is 94%, compared to the national rate of 85%.

Download the full infographic report at ACTE’s website.