SkillsUSA Friday Flash
Share Your Signing Day with the Nation
Chapters across the nation will celebrate SkillsUSA National Signing Day on May 5, highlighting the value of the skilled trades as they recognize career and technical students for their dedication to career readiness and a career in the skilled trades. Hundreds of SkillsUSA schools in over 25 states and territories are expected to participate in the 2022 event — some virtually, but most in-person. Year by year, SkillsUSA National Signing Day is generating greater awareness that the skilled trades offer rewarding career paths.
On Signing Day, SkillsUSA chapters will host students at signing ceremonies attended by administrators, teachers, elected officials, SkillsUSA advisors, family and friends. Like signing day events for student athletes who commit to a college or team, students will be applauded one by one as they sign letters of intent for a job offer, apprenticeship or advanced technical training. Throughout the day, skilled trades supporters nationwide will share their encouragement for these future workers, so watch our SkillsUSA social media channels and website for updates.
All chapters are asked to submit their Signing Day photos, videos and stories to SkillsUSA’s communications team so we can highlight your local events. To submit your photos and stories, upload them here. If you post on social media, use the hashtag #SkillsUSANationalSigningDay.
Earn a Chance at a $50 Amazon Gift Card Just by Saying “Thanks”
Carhartt and Tractor Supply Company (TSC) recently stepped up with a $100,000 donation to SkillsUSA through their Support the Trades campaign. Now’s the time for SkillsUSA Nation to say thank you with short thank-you videos from SkillsUSA teachers or students. A video submission earns you a spot in a drawing for one of two $50 Amazon gift cards. Find full details and guidelines here. Once you enter your email address and click “Submit” (which will enter you into the drawing), you’ll be taken to a dropbox page to upload your video. If you prefer, you can also send your videos via any file transfer service directly to Tom Kercheval, SkillsUSA’s director of communications. Videos must be received by April 22, and winners of the gift cards will be announced in early May. Thanks for helping us show these partners how much we appreciate their ongoing support!
Final Call for Musical Talent to Perform at NLSC
Apply here by April 22 for the SkillsUSA Talent Program. Selected members will showcase their musical ability in front of more than 12,000 SkillsUSA participants from across the country during one of three high-energy arena sessions during the National Leadership & Skills Conference in Atlanta. They may also perform for smaller audiences during the conference.
Students or advisors will be offered complimentary conference registration if their sole purpose of attendance is to participate in the SkillsUSA Talent Program. SkillsUSA Championships contestants are eligible, but performance opportunities may be limited due to scheduling conflicts. Applicants must be current paid SkillsUSA members and must submit a video file performing a song of choice that demonstrates their musical ability. Individual or group performances are welcome. For questions, contact Joey Baker.
Making a Presentation of Your Chapter’s Successes at Your SLSC
After your students return from your State Leadership & Skills Conference (SLSC), we recommend you and your student(s) consider making a presentation to your local school board and/or administrator. A presentation allows these stakeholders to better understand SkillsUSA and the opportunities the organization provides to its members.
A sample presentation might share the SkillsUSA mission and statistics about the local occupational programs; how the student(s) prepared for the SLSC; highlights of the SLSC; and include photos and videos from the conference.
Celebrate Community Contributions During SkillsUSA’s National Week of Service
SkillsUSA is asking all chapters to conduct and promote a community service project during SkillsUSA’s National Week of Service, May 8-14. This event helps commemorate the founding of SkillsUSA on May 8, 1965. Connect with SkillsUSA via social media by posting photos of your activities online. Chapter advisors or officers should email a brief description of their chapter events to Gayle Silvey at firstname.lastname@example.org. In return, we’ll send a SkillsUSA logo gift item valued at $15 to say thanks.
We encourage participants to publicize your projects locally. To locate media resources for your community, including contact information for area newspapers, use our SkillsUSA Advocacy Site. On the site, click on “Media,” enter your ZIP code, and choose up to six outlets at a time. Then, click on “Send a Message.” To see the full contact information for each outlet, click on the name of the newspaper.
Upcoming Professional Development Opportunities
Please join your fellow advisors on May 6, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET, for a great professional development opportunity. Through this event, SkillsUSA advisors can learn how to be intentional in their strategic planning by using the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) High Quality Framework. This session will assist advisors in creating program goals for the coming year. A PDF of the 2022 Professional Development Opportunities is available here. You can register for these and more professional membership benefits here. Completion certificates are provided for each session. Use this Google Doc to learn how to access your professional membership benefits online. For questions, contact Karolina Belen.
Facilitating Cloud Technologies on SkillsUSA Technical Fridays
Join us for SkillsUSA Technical Fridays, new industry-led workshops that help teachers develop specific technical skills relevant to their career fields. On April 29, from 4-5 p.m. ET, the presenter is instructor and textbook author Jill West. Her session will focus on preparing students to work in the cloud and bringing the cloud into the classroom. You’ll also practice building servers in Amazon Web Services. Appropriate for all experience levels, and the cost is $10. Register here.
The SkillsUSA Store National Signing Day Collection
SkillsUSA’s National Signing Day will be held on May 5. Check out a new collection of items dedicated to National Signing Day in the SkillsUSA Store. A new National Signing Day T-shirt will also be available soon. The T-shirt is 100% cotton in a fresh and fun light blue color. May 5 will be here before you know it!
Press Release Template for State Conference Participants
The SkillsUSA Advocacy Site offers a press release template for state conference participants and others to share competition results with local media. Parents, instructors, students or anyone can send emails using the customizable template. For questions, email Jane Short.
Apply for Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Travel Scholarships
SkillsUSA and Harbor Freight Tools for Schools are offering a new travel scholarship opportunity for SkillsUSA high school members in selected trades who are competing in the 2022 SkillsUSA Championships. Eligible members can apply to receive up to $1,500 to assist in attending the 2022 National Leadership & Skills Conference (NLSC). Applications will be accepted through May 20. Recipients will be announced on May 25. More information and the application are available here.
SkillsUSA Scholarships Open for Applications
Several scholarships are open to benefit SkillsUSA students in pursuit of further education or certification in their chosen fields. Help spread the word about these opportunities:
Fine Homebuilding #KeepCraftAlive Scholarship
Scholarships to SkillsUSA high school or college/postsecondary students continuing their education or certification programs in construction-related fields. Deadline: May 30.
Larry Rash Memorial Scholarship
Two $2,500 scholarships in 2022 to support active SkillsUSA members who plan to further their education in architectural drafting (or a related field). Deadline: May 31.
Bob Westphal Memorial Scholarship
Merit-based scholarships to high school or college/postsecondary students continuing their education to pursue a career in energy construction (oil and gas pipelines, gas distribution, solar, and wind). Deadline: May 31.
Clifford T. Rees, Jr. Memorial Scholarship
Multiple $2,500 scholarships to SkillsUSA high school juniors, seniors or college/postsecondary students in enrolled in a HVACR or a general construction program and who will be pursuing college/postsecondary career training in the HVACR industry. Deadline: May 31.
Student Research Foundation Scholarship
One scholarship to a SkillsUSA member currently enrolled in high school who plans to continue their education in a postsecondary program. It recognizes outstanding community contribution. Deadline: July 26.
Apply for the Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teacher Excellence
Applications are now open for the Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence. The prize was launched in 2017 to recognize outstanding instruction in the skilled trades in U.S. public high schools and the teachers who inspire students to learn skills to prepare for life after graduation. In 2022, the program will award more than $1.25 million in prizes. Six SkillsUSA instructors were recognized as winners in 2021. Applications must be received by May 20. Finalists will be announced on June 27 and winners will be announced in October. Learn more and apply online here.