Happy Holidays From SkillsUSA

On behalf of the SkillsUSA Illinois Board of Directors, Staff, and State Officers, we would like to wish you Happy Holidays. We truly appreciate your time, dedication, and intentionality you devote each and every day to working with our members to ensure they are career ready and setup for a successful future.

You obviously believe in this critical and crucial work and we could not be more honored to work with you. Please enjoy this holiday season with family and friends and we hope you find time to relax and recharge as well. Happy Holidays!

State Qualifying Events Information

SkillsUSA Illinois is excited to announce final information regarding the State Qualifying Event (SQE) process. Two regional-based Championship events, State Qualifying Conferences (SQC), will be hosted in early March allowing every student the opportunity for a hands-on event. These events are as follows:

  • March 1, 2019 – Southwestern Illinois College (Granite City, IL)
  • March 8, 2019 – Elgin Community College (Elgin, IL)

This afternoon, the lead advisor on file at each school will receive an email notifying them of their school’s State Qualifying Conference assignment.

Contest Offerings
The following contests will be offered at these State Qualifying Conferences:

  • Architectural Drafting (CAD)
  • Automotive Service Technology
  • Cabinetmaking
  • Carpentry
  • Commercial Baking
  • Computer Programming
  • Cosmetology
  • Criminal Justice
  • Culinary Arts
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Emergency Medical Technician
  • Esthetics
  • Firefighting
  • First Aid/CPR
  • Job Interview
  • Nurse Assisting
  • Technical Drafting (CAD)
  • Welding

Qualifying for the State Championships
Students can qualify for the SkillsUSA Illinois Championships through the State Qualifying Conferences OR State Qualifying Exams, attending a conference is not required. Students must complete a State Qualifying Exam if they wish to register for a State Qualifying Conference.

  • All competitors must be paid members of SkillsUSA, by the conference registration deadline. This includes both national and state dues.
  • State Qualifying Conference events will advance a specific number of students, per competitive event, based on the qualifying event formula.
  • State Qualifying Exams will establish a state-wide ranking in the qualifying competitions. SkillsUSA Illinois will use this list to fill the remaining open positions in the contest once the qualifiers from the State Qualifying Conferences have been placed.
  • Students will not be required to participate in a State Qualifying Conference, to be eligible for the SkillsUSA Illinois Championships

State Qualifying Events Timeline
 The following is the 2019 timeline of the State Qualifying Events process.

  • January 4 – Registration Instructions Available
  • January 30 – Registration Deadline for State Qualifying Conferences and Exams
    • Membership must be submitted upon registration
    • February 15 – General Membership Deadline
  • February 8-14 – State Qualifying Exam Window
  • February 15 – SLSC Registration Instructions Available
  • March 1 – State Qualifying Conference – South (Granite City, IL)
  • March 8 – State Qualifying Conference – North (Elgin, IL)
  • March 11 – SQE Results Released
  • March 17 – SLSC Registration Deadline

State Qualifying Event Fees
State Qualifying Exams will cost $10 per exam (students may complete multiple exams). State Qualifying Conferences will be an additional $30 (student may only compete in one State Qualifying Conference Event. 


Registration and additional conference information will be made available early in the new year.
If you have any questions, please reach out to membership@skillsusaillinois.org.

L.E.A.D. 2018 Recap

On November 1-3, 2018, over 200 SkillsUSA Illinois student and professional members came together in Lisle, IL for this year’s SkillsUSA Illinois L.E.A.D. (Learn. Educate. Act. Dream.) conference. This year’s event was sponsored by our friends at Insurance Auto Auctions (IAA) and Lowe’s. Students took part in true experiential learning around the SkillsUSA Framework and how to properly run and manage a chapter. While at L.E.A.D., students increased their career readiness though experience as well as gained a toolbox of skills that can be used to lead others.

This conference focused around developing students’ professionalism, responsibility, self-motivation, communication, teamwork, leadership, service orientation, and professional development essential elements of the SkillsUSA Framework.

An annual highlight to our event is each student being able to complete a simulated interview with an actual human resources professional with in the field. Thank you to IAA for coordinating and sponsoring this fantastic experience for students.

L.E.A.D. was also an opportunity for Advisors to learn as well. Advisors explored best practices of career readiness instruction by learning about state and national level changes around career and technical education and Perkins V legislation. Advisors also explored how to lead a SkillsUSA Chapter by jumping in with students during L.E.A.D. and simulating a properly managed chapter experience. Last but not least, L.E.A.D. provided advisors an opportunity to experience the SkillsUSA Career Essentials Suite and the benefit of teaching these industry-demanded skills to students.

L.E.A.D. is a great event for all students to become better leaders and world-class workers. We hope to see you and your chapter at L.E.A.D. 2019 – November 7-9, 2019 at the Sheridan in Lisle, IL. If you have any questions, please contact Chris Anderson at canderson@skillsusaillinois.org.

Chapter Excellence Program – Level One

Last month, SkillsUSA Illinois announced State Leadership and Skills Conference discount for those chapters who complete level one of SkillsUSA’s Chapter Excellence Program. Chapters that attain the CEP Quality Chapter award will receive a $5 student discount to SLSC 2019. Do think your chapter has what it takes? To earn Level 1 Quality Chapter Award, a chapter must:

  • Pay membership dues
  • Have all section advisors pay professional dues to SkillsUSA
  • Elect chapter officers
  • Conduct well planned, regularly scheduled chapter meetings
  • Complete a projected chapter budget (list of planned income and expenses for the year)
  • Complete a program of work (list of planned chapter activities for the year)
  • Conduct at least one activity within each of the three framework components
    • Personal Skills
    • Workplace Skills
    • Technical Skills
  • Complete the Level 1 Quality Chapter application

For more information or ideas, visit: https://www.skillsusa.org/programs/chapter-excellence-program/

Need help or have questions? We’re here to help, email membership@skillsusaillinois.org.

SkillsUSA Career Essentials: Experiences

Working together in teams, understanding leadership, communicating clearly and demonstrating integrity are required in any career. However, these skills haven’t been easy to teach — until now. SkillsUSA Career Essentials: Experiences is the next generation of employability skill-building curricula developed for today’s students. SkillsUSA Career Essentials: Experiences curricula have everything you need to give your students what they need to be career-ready.

Learn more at http://www.skillsusaillinois.org/educators/skillsusa-career-essentials-experiences/