SkillsUSA today revealed 22 young competitors who will represent the United States at WorldSkills, the largest international showcase of the skilled trades.
SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. Its selected team members, with an average age of 19, are masters in their craft. Their dedication to training and perfecting their skills will be on display as they compete against peers from across the globe in a variety of intense skills challenges.
“They come from all corners of the country, they compete for different reasons, but they are all focused on one goal: standing atop the WorldSkills podium, a gold medal hanging around their neck, and honoring the American flag as ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ fills the conference center loudspeakers,” said SkillsUSA’s executive director Tim Lawrence. “From mechanical engineering to hairdressing to aircraft maintenance, we’ve watched these competitors gain expertise and create purpose behind their passions. We’re thrilled the WorldSkills USA team will get the chance to represent their country while excelling at a skill they love.”
Every two years, competitors from 76 countries and regions around the world compete in more than 50 different trade skills at WorldSkills. The next competition will take place Aug. 22-27, 2019, in Kazan, Russia, and showcase trade skills from construction and building technology, creative arts and fashion, information and communication technology, manufacturing and engineering, social and personal services, and transportation and logistics.
3M is the lead sponsor of the 2019 WorldSkills USA team. “3M and WorldSkills USA share a commitment to addressing the shortage of qualified skilled workers across many industries,” said Mojdeh Poul, executive vice president, 3M Safety and Graphics Business Group. “As a global science-based company, we recognize that science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills are the foundation for many trades. This sponsorship is about inspiring the next generation of skilled workers and supporting their efforts in Kazan.” Other team sponsors include Ferguson and Lowe’s.
SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of education and industry to strengthen our nation’s skilled workforce. Driven by employer demand, SkillsUSA helps students develop necessary personal and workplace skills along with technical skills grounded in academics. The SkillsUSA Framework empowers every student to succeed at work and in life, while helping to close the “skills gap” in which millions of positions go unfilled. Through SkillsUSA’s championships program and curricula, employers have long ensured schools are teaching relevant technical skills, and with SkillsUSA’s new credentialing process, they can now assess how ready potential employees are for the job. SkillsUSA has more than 360,000 annual members nationwide in high schools, colleges and middle schools, covering over 130 trade, technical and skilled service occupations, and is recognized by the U.S. departments of Education and Labor as integral to career and technical education. For more information, visit www.skillsusa.org.
The first WorldSkills competition was held in 1950 in Madrid, Spain. In 1973, President Richard M. Nixon recognized SkillsUSA (then known as VICA) as the official U.S. representative to WorldSkills. The United States and SkillsUSA have come a long way since first entering the competition in 1975. Hundreds of thousands of spectators, public policymakers, employers, teachers, trainers, technical experts and government officials from around the world will attend this biennial competition and watch the WorldSkills USA team make the United States proud. Since 1950, WorldSkills has come to symbolize the pinnacle of excellence in vocational training. It provides a unique means of exchange and comparison of world-class competency standards in the industrial trades and service sectors of the global economy. The continued growth of WorldSkills attests to the fact that traditional trade and craft skills, along with newer technology’s multi-skilled occupations, make an essential contribution to the economic and social well-being of people everywhere.
For information about the WorldSkills USA individual team members, and to see their bios, videos, releases and photos, visit: www.worldskillsusa.org