YUHSD CTE Ambassadors attend annual SkillsUSA leadership training in Washington, D.C.
YUMA, AZ - A delegation of 94 Yuma Union High School District Career & Technical Education (CTE) students traveled to Washington, D.C. from Sept. 17-21, 2022 for the annual SkillsUSA Washington Leadership Training Institute (WLTI).
The four-day WLTI conference provided students an opportunity to grow in their professionalism, communication, and leadership skills. This year, more than 450 students from across the nation took part in activities such as meeting with legislative representatives; a tour of Washington, D.C., visiting monuments and museums; a CTE Rally; and a wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
“The training is about advocacy,” YUHSD CTE Executive Director Lorie Honeycutt said. “It is about telling your story and articulating it clearly so others want to take action. By having the students take this training, they are learning that many adults don’t really have. It is a very select group that gets to go to this training from the different states. We are fortunate that SkillsUSA allows us to continue participating.”
Honeycutt added that 100 percent of YUHSD students attending WLTI this year were awarded the National Statesman award. According to the SkillsUSA website, to take home the award, students had to interview regarding the impact of Perkins funding; take a test regarding SkillsUSA as well as Civic Awareness and Carl D. Perkins Act; and sit for a personal interview with a SkillsUSA national staff member, state association director, state advisor, and SkillsUSA board member.
"When I found out I was accepted to attend the WLTI trip, I was thrilled to know I'd be able to be a part of the opportunity,” San Luis High School sophomore Anasofia Ramirez said. “My experience during WLTI was very enlightening, educational and fun. WLTI impacted me with knowledge about how greatly important it is to be career ready, and how many job positions are in need of being filled. Being in CTE leadership was very academically informative, it even helped me with life outside of school.”
Kofa High School junior Alayna Pallanes added: “I felt so honored to be part of something so big and amazing. If I were to be offered the opportunity to attend other trainings and conferences again, I would definitely take the offer because it was such an amazing experience that I would love to be a part of again.”
SkillsUSA is one of the nation's largest individual membership organizations for career and technical students and its programs are integrated into the CTE curriculum. CTE also helps create a trained pipeline of future workers to support a strong American economy and global competitiveness.
Founded in 1965, SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of students, teachers and industry that empowers its members to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens. The SkillsUSA Framework of Personal, Workplace and Technical Skills Grounded in Academics inspires work and life success for students while helping industry close the skills gap currently leaving millions of skilled trade jobs unfilled. Through SkillsUSA's career competitions program and curricula, employers ensure schools are teaching relevant technical skills, and with SkillsUSA's credentialing process, they can assess the career-readiness of their future employees. SkillsUSA's membership of more than 330,000 students and instructors encompasses middle schools, high schools and college/postsecondary institutions in every state and three U.S. territories. SkillsUSA programming covers 130 trade, technical and skilled service occupations and is recognized by the U.S. Departments of Education and Labor as integral to career and technical education. For more information: www.skillsusa.org