The Problem

  • The National Federation of Independent Business recently cited the NUMBER ONE problem of its members: “The shortage of skilled, trained workers.”
  • The skills employers are desperate for are not only technical skills, but also EMPLOYABILITY skills (teamwork, communications, leadership, goal-setting, etc.).

The Solution


  • National nonprofit organization for high school and college students enrolled in trade, technical, industrial and health occupations programs.
  • More than 300,000 members in all 50 states and three U.S. territories (Guam, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico).
  • More than 7,000 members in Tennessee

SkillsUSA brings together educators, administrators, corporate America, labor organizations, trade associations and government in a coordinated effort to address America’s need for a globally competitive skilled work force.

The SkillsUSA Mission:

To empower our student members to become world-class workers and responsible American citizens.

Our Core Values:

Integrity, Responsibility, Citizenship, Service and Respect

Our mission is accomplished through our Program of Work…

Professional Development

  • These programs teach employability skills, including communication skills, ethics, conflict resolution, time management, goal-setting, and more.

Community Service

  • Instills lifetime commitment to community service.
  • Promotes goodwill and understanding among all segments of a community.
  • Teaches the importance of teamwork.

Social Activities

  • Increase cooperation in the school and community.
  • Improve self-esteem by providing healthy outlets.
  • Students feel like they are part of a team.

Ways and Means

  • Chapter fundraising activities to support the chapter’s yearly projects.

Public Relations

  • Help change public misconceptions and stereotypes of technical education students and programs.
  • Make the public aware of the value of strong technical education programs in our school systems.


  • Students offered job shadowing, mentoring, apprenticeship opportunities.
  • Increased student awareness of career options, quality job practices and attitudes.
  • Increased opportunities for employer contact and eventual employment.

SkillsUSA Championships

  • Competitions occur on the local, district, state, national, and international levels.
  • Competitions conduction in occupational (hard) skills AND leadership (employability or soft) skills.
  • Business and Industry set the contest standards through technical committee involvement.

SkillsUSA Showcases your School

  • Showcases the school to the community through student activity and service to others.
  • Helps instructors meet educational standards.
  • Improves the quality of training programs.
  • Helps produce more qualified graduates.
  • Assists with recruitment and enrollment.
  • Provides avenues for state and national recognition.

Administrators are Key to the Success of the SkillsUSA Program!

Ways to Get Involved

  • Encourage instructors to get involved in the SkillsUSA program early in the school year.
  • Recognize instructors and students for their SkillsUSA achievements through bulletin boards or showcases, in newsletters, the school TV broadcast or daily announcements.
  • Support travel to state or national SkillsUSA events (and go with the group, if you can).
  • Help explore or provide funding sources for SkillsUSA training opportunities and educational materials.

For more information on SkillsUSA and how to get involved, contact Tracy Whitehead