PIQUA — The SkillsUSA chapter at Upper Valley Career Center was recently named among the top 24 SkillsUSA chapters nationally as a “Model of Excellence” recipient. This national program recognizes the exceptional integration and application of personal, workplace and technical skills in SkillsUSA chapter activities. This is one of the highest awards bestowed on chapters by SkillsUSA, which is among the largest student organizations for career and technical education.
“The Models of Excellence program represents the very best in chapter achievement and community involvement,” said Timothy W. Lawrence, executive director of SkillsUSA. “The Upper Valley Career Center chapter defines excellence across the board, serving as a model for other chapters to emulate in strengthening their local programs. These students represent our future workforce and reflect the future of their communities. What a tremendous honor that validates this outstanding SkillsUSA program.”
In fact the Upper Valley Career Center’s SkillsUSA chapter is a repeat Model of Excellence recipient having received the recognition in 2016. The chapter operates under the direction of advisErs Sara Plozay and Jeff Bertke.
“We were thrilled with the 2016 award, but to earn this distinction two years in a row is very rare and especially gratifying,” said Plozay.
“We ask a lot of our student leaders and they continue to exceed our expectations,” said Bertke.
The 24 Models of Excellence chapters will participate in the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Louisville, June 19-23. Activities include finalist interviews, an awards dinner at the Kentucky Derby Museum, and recognition at an awards ceremony in front of more than 12,000 students, instructors and business leaders. The Upper Valley Career Center chapter will also receive a grant of up to $4,000 from program sponsor Lowe’s Companies Inc.
“This is the third year Lowe’s has supported this program, and we are honored to be part of it,” said Troy J. Dally, Lowe’s senior vice president, general merchandising manager, seasonal and services. “These students are an amazing group. They possess the skills that every employer seeks, including leadership, initiative, communication, teamwork and problem solving. Their teachers and advisors take the education of these students to the next level by elevating it from classroom instruction to successful application and fulfillment.”
The Models of Excellence program promotes the intentional learning of personal, workplace and technical skills outlined in the SkillsUSA Framework for student development. Specific characteristics defined within each skill area help ensure tangible benchmarks for student achievement and chapter programming. Achievement is measured by the effectiveness of student efforts in implementing essential workplace skills including personal responsibility, integrity, work ethic and organization in chapter activities. The hands-on approach of this program actualizes the SkillsUSA mission of empowering members to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens.
SkillsUSA is a vital solution to the growing U.S. skills gap. This nonprofit partnership of students, instructors and industry ensures America has the skilled workforce it needs to stay competitive. Founded in 1965 and endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education, the association serves more than 335,000 member students and instructors each year in middle schools, high schools and colleges. This diverse talent pipeline covers 130 trade, technical and skilled service occupations, the majority STEM-related. More than 600 corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions actively support SkillsUSA at the national level. SkillsUSA programs are integrated into career and technical education through a framework of personal, workplace and technical skills grounded in academics. Local, state and national championships, designed and judged by industry, set relevant standards for career and technical education and provide needed recognition to its students. SkillsUSA also offers technical skill assessments and other workplace credentials. For more information, go to: www.SkillsUSA.org.
About Lowe’s in the Community
Lowe’s, a Fortune 50 home improvement company, has a 60-year legacy of supporting the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects. In the past decade, Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation together have contributed nearly $300 million to these efforts, and for more than two decades Lowe’s Heroes volunteers have donated their time to make our communities better places to live. For the latest news, visit Newsroom.Lowes.com or follow @LowesMedia on Twitter.