Active Advisor News: January 2019

Active Advisor News: January 2019

Update from Tim Lawrence

Tim LawrenceHappy 2019! I hope your holiday break was enjoyable. As the new year gets into full swing, I want to say how much I appreciate all you do — and provide a few helpful pieces of information for you and your students. For your convenience, the Active Advisor newsletters are archived on our website at:

That’s all for now. Thanks for all you do for the great students we serve.

Plan Now for 2019 SkillsUSA Week

You can participate in SkillsUSA Week many different ways: hold an open house, invite local media to tour your programs, conduct a community service project, work with area businesses to build more meaningful partnerships, or engage with policymakers to talk about the value of technical education. For a complete SkillsUSA Week calendar of events, and resources including a sample proclamation, go to:

We encourage you to plan activities to follow the daily schedule of events that will be celebrated in chapters nationwide:

  • Monday, Feb. 4, is Appreciation Day. Plan an event to celebrate and honor the support of advisors, teachers and administrators.
  • Tuesday, Feb. 5, is Advocacy Day. Plan local or state public relations activities including presentations to legislators, school board members, administrators and community group leaders.
  • Wednesday, Feb. 6, is Member Outreach Day. Involve members in the recruitment of middle and elementary school students into your CTE programs, or plan appreciation activities that honor current members.
  • Thursday, Feb. 7, is SkillsUSA Serves Day. Rally around your community by focusing on a day of giving through service projects or fundraisers.
  • Friday, Feb. 8, is SkillsUSA Day. Celebrate SkillsUSA by wearing your favorite SkillsUSA shirt, planning a celebration and posting the event to social media.

The SkillsUSA Store has created a SkillsUSA Week T-shirt for $18. Visit to order your shirt and other SkillsUSA products to support your week of celebration. 

Chapters Who Act Now Can Earn $1,000 for SkillsUSA Week   

SkillsUSA is proud to announce a grant opportunity for SkillsUSA chapters. Eligible chapters can apply to receive up to $1,000 to assist in creating a SkillsUSA open house during SkillsUSA Week (Feb. 3-9) and Career and Technical Education Month to increase community awareness and support student recruitment.

Applications will be accepted through Jan. 11. Recipients will be announced Jan. 15.

Apply online: 

Teachers Helping Teachers at the ‘Teach to Lead’ Summit

Teach to Lead supports teachers as valued experts in instruction and students’ needs. Teach to Lead summits provide teams with time to collaborate, skills development, and professional consultation to incubate innovative ideas that can make a positive impact for schools, communities, district and states. Teach to Lead encourages teachers to present an actionable idea for team discussion. All submitted ideas must:

  • Encourage teachers to lead from the classroom
  • Promote collaborative work among multiple stakeholders
  • Identify an area in need of innovation or a specific problem with an eye toward actionable solutions
  • Be viable in the local context and sustainable over time

For more information and to apply, go to: Applications are due on Jan. 28. Accepted teachers will be notified by Feb. 11.

Winter Magazine Highlights Competitive Events

SkillsUSA advisors have received the winter print edition of SkillsUSA Champions magazine. Please direct your students to the digital edition on the SkillsUSA website here: The digital edition includes everything in the print issue plus extra videos, direct links to external resources and other dynamic material.

The winter issue always focuses on the SkillsUSA Championships, and it can be helpful in recruitment. This one includes articles about student members from Pennsylvania, Kansas, Georgia, New Jersey, California, Florida, Maine and New York. A feature story appears about our ambassador to the WorldSkills Champions Trust, as well as a profile of a dedicated advisor from inner-city Providence, R.I. There’s also a wrap-up of our record-breaking Washington Leadership Training Institute. A teacher’s lesson plan for students is posted alongside the link to the digital edition.

Successful SkillsUSA Chapters Start Here

Did your chapter elect officers this year, hold regular chapter meetings and engage in chapter activities? Why not take it to the next level? Complete the Chapter Excellence Program Quality Chapter application and receive the recognition you deserve.

The online application is on the main page of the membership registration site once you log into your school account (

The Building a Successful SkillsUSA Chapter Teacher’s Guide can be downloaded at: The guide offers simple and easy steps to follow on completing the application, engaging students in the process and infusing the SkillsUSA Framework into chapter activities.

For questions or help, call or email the SkillsUSA Hotline: 844-875-4557 or

Constitutional Amendments Deadline Approaching

Current SkillsUSA members can submit proposed constitutional amendments to the middle school, high school and college/postsecondary constitutions. Constitutional amendment motions must be submitted in writing to Kim Hegedus at by Feb. 1 by 5 p.m. ET.

SkillsUSA’s National Executive Council and board of directors will review all submissions during the March board meeting.

All approved motions will be distributed to state SkillsUSA directors at least 60 days prior to the National Leadership and Skills Conference (NLSC), on or before April 25. Motions will then be presented for vote at the official business meeting of the House of Delegates during the 2019 NLSC.

Constitutional amendments are governed by Article XII of the high school and college/postsecondary constitutions and Article X of the middle school constitution.

For more information, to view the constitutions and to find the motion form, go to:

If you have questions, contact Kim Hegedus at  317-544-8750 or

Seeking Talented Singers to Open Conference

SkillsUSA is seeking talented student or adult performers to sing the national anthem at the Opening Ceremony for the 2019 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference. Auditions must be received by Feb. 4. SkillsUSA does not pay any travel expenses for the selected singer to attend the national conference. Questions may be directed to Heidi Walsh at 703-737-0615 or

Audition videos can be submitted via: and must be the singing of the national anthem.

National Conference Pin and T-Shirt Design Challenge

Feb. 5 is the deadline for entries to be received (not postmarked) for the SkillsUSA National Conference Pin and T-shirt Design Challenge. This event is open to all paid student members of SkillsUSA. This is a great way to have a student and advisor from your state recognized. Questions may be directed to Heidi Walsh at 703-737-0615 or

Entries are accepted by mail only (no electronic files), and rules are posted on the SkillsUSA website at: 

Nominations Open for Honorary Life Membership, Outstanding Career and Technical Educator

Nominations are now open for SkillsUSA’s national Honorary Life Membership and Outstanding Career and Technical Educator awards and are due by Feb. 15. Awards will be presented June 25 at the Opening Ceremony of the National Leadership and Skills Conference. Online application forms are at: If you have questions, contact Gayle Silvey at or 404-216-6040.

Focus Your Students on Safety

CareerSafe sponsors an annual National Youth Safety Video Contest, which challenges students in any training program to create a two-minute video demonstrating safety in the workplace. Submissions are due to CareerSafe by March 1. The winning students receive a SkillsUSA prize pack and a $2,500 scholarship, and the winning school will receive $5,000. There are additional prizes for second and third place. For details, visit the CareerSafe website at:

Earn Recognition for Service Through Presidential Honors

SkillsUSA is a certifying organization of the President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA), allowing advisors, student members and registered alumni to earn recognition for community service activities and time spent volunteering.

This award is a presidential honor that recognizes the valuable contributions of volunteers across the country who are answering a national call to serve others through their current activities or lifetime efforts. With SkillsUSA’s focus on community service, advisors and students may already meet the requirements to receive the award. To qualify, SkillsUSA members, advisors or alumni can submit a record of their service hours.

For details on qualifying hours and requirements for submission, visit: Applications must be received by March 29.

Gain National Attention for Student Mentoring

SkillsUSA sponsors a national recognition opportunity called the Student2Student mentoring program. Mentoring connects young people to personal growth and development, as well as economic opportunities. When a SkillsUSA chapter mentors an elementary- or middle-school classrom, it helps younger students imagine careers and helps older students practice their skills.

Student2Student recognizes SkillsUSA chapters that are involved in mentoring in their communities. To enter, submit your mentoring project plan, description and outcomes. The winning chapter will be recognized at the 2019 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference. In addition, the winner will be invited to present at SkillsUSA University during conference. Entries are due by April 1. Winners are announced in May. Download the Mentoring Guide:

For more information, contact Gayle Silvey at or visit:

National Officer Candidate Applications Sought

The 2019 SkillsUSA national officer candidate application and national officer program guide are now available on the SkillsUSA website:  The deadline for SkillsUSA national officer applications is June 1. Contact Kim Hegedus,, 317-544-8750 with questions. 

New Year, New Blazers

The SkillsUSA Store has introduced a redesigned SkillsUSA blazer, now shipped with two extra buttons and a garment bag at new lower prices. With a price point of $99, bulk discount pricing at $79 and upgraded features, schools can update their closets and outfit students less expensively for competitions and conferences. For details, go to: 

Ignore Email Solicitations for SkillsUSA Mailing Lists

SkillsUSA never sells or shares our attendee lists or email lists. Periodically, people affiliated with SkillsUSA receive emails from companies trying to sell a SkillsUSA attendee or mailing list. These companies don’t have a SkillsUSA list, and these are not legitimate offers. The people who send these messages are not affiliated with SkillsUSA. We encourage you to avoid interaction with these solicitors, mark the messages as spam and delete them.