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Valley students honored at annual SkillsUSA workforce development event

Posted 7/9/24

More than 6,000 students competed at the 2024 SkillsUSA Championships.

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Valley students honored at annual SkillsUSA workforce development event


Local students were recognized at the 2024 SkillsUSA Championships, held in Atlanta, on June 26-27.

More than 6,000 students competed at the national showcase of career and technical education. The SkillsUSA Championships covers 1.79 million square feet, equivalent to 31 football fields or 41 acres.

Students were invited to the event to demonstrate their technical skills, workplace skills and personal skills in 115 hands-on occupational and leadership competitions including robotics, automotive technology, drafting, criminal justice, aviation maintenance and public speaking.

Industry leaders from 850 businesses, corporations, trade associations and unions planned and evaluated the contestants against their standards for entry-level workers. Industry support of the SkillsUSA Championships is valued at over $36 million in donated time, equipment, cash and material. More than 1,200 industry judges and technical committee members participated this year.

All SkillsUSA Championships competitors were honored June 28 at the closing SkillsUSA Awards Session at State Farm Arena. As an indicator of proficiency, Skill Point Certificates were awarded to all national contestants who met a predetermined threshold contest score for their SkillsUSA event, demonstrating workplace readiness. Students can add this certificate to an employment portfolio.

Ryan Dilts, from Peoria and a student at West MEC, was awarded a Skill Point Certificate in Marine Service Technology.

Tania Hernandez, from Laveen and a student at West MEC, was awarded a Skill Point Certificate in Esthetics.

Vivian Sander, from Surprise and a student at West MEC, was awarded a Skill Point Certificate in Cosmetology.

"More than 6,000 students from every state in the nation participated in the 2024 SkillsUSA Championships," said SkillsUSA Executive Director Chelle Travis. "This showcase of career and technical education demonstrates SkillsUSA at its finest. Our students, instructors and industry partners work together to ensure that every student excels. This program expands learning and career opportunities for our members."

The SkillsUSA Championships event is held annually for students in middle school, high school or college/postsecondary programs as part of the SkillsUSA National Leadership & Skills Conference. The national, nonprofit partnership of students, instructors and industry is a verified talent pipeline for America's skilled workforce that is working to help solve the skills gap.