Two MCTC students–Phil Patton and Dan Rogers–competed in the SkillsUSA Championships at the 46th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City, June 20 – 25.
Quality career and technical education was the centerpiece of the conference. More than 14,000 students, teachers, education leaders, and representatives from more than 1,100 national corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions attended the event. Special highlighted events were the SkillsUSA Championships June 23 and 24 with 96 hands-on skill and leadership competitions.
The SkillsUSA Championships is the showcase for the best career and technical students in the nation. Working against the clock and each other, the participants proved their expertise in job skills for occupations such as electronics, technical drafting, precision machining, medical assisting and culinary arts. There were also competitions in leadership skills, such as extemporaneous speaking and conducting meetings by parliamentary procedures.
In order to qualify for the national competition, the students completed in local and state contests. The state gold metal winners advanced to the national SkillsUSA Championships. Patton and Rogers both took first place at the SkillsUSA Minnesota Conference in April.
Patton received the bronze metal in the High School Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration competition. Rogers placed 7th out of 23 in the Industrial Motor Controls contest. Minnesota received 38 medals overall, a record for Minnesota and one of the highest totals in the country.
All winners receive medallions and frequently receive tools of their trade and/or scholarships to further their careers and education. The SkillsUSA Championships is for high school and college-level students who are members of SkillsUSA. More than 5,600 students from every state and three territories completed in 96 contests in technical, skilled and service occuptionsk, including health occupations this year.
SkillsUSA is the national organization for students in trade, industrial, technical and health occupations education. It sponsors the SkillsUSA Championships annually to recognize the achievements of career and technical education students and to encourage them to strive for excellence and pride in their chosen occupations. SkillsUSA organizes this event, and it is considered the single greatest day of industry volunteerism in America every year at an estimated cost of more than $35 million. The philosophy of the Championships is to reward students for excellence, to involve industry in directly evaluating student performance and to keep training relevant to employers’ needs.