SkillsUSA Florida Conference

SkillsUSA is a national organization with more than 13,000 chapters, which serves more than 300,000 students and instructors annually. SkillsUSA improves the quality of America’s skilled workforce through a structured program of citizenship, leadership, employability, technical and professional skills training. This organization enhances the lives and careers of students, instructors and industry professionals as they strive to be champions at work. SkillsUSA’s mission is to empower its members to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens. One way that SkillsUSA enforces their mission is by hosting regional and state competitions.

FLATE was invited to attend the SkillsUSA Florida State Leadership and Skills Conference in
Lakeland on April 24 and 25. This competition allowed students to showcase their skills and help them to discover and grow their career passions and appreciate their own self-worth. Examples of competitions included wedding cake design, computer programming, cosmetology, construction, digital cinema production, and mobile robotics.

Over the course of the two days, FLATE hosted a display table in the West Exhibition Hall of the Lakeland Center. FLATE team members were given the opportunity to speak with students, families, and instructors from all over the state. Even though Jane, FLATE’s NAO robot, was especially popular, visitors were able to get information regarding several FLATE programs and events. Summer camps, professional development for teachers, Women in Manufacturing, and the two-year ET degree were of the most interest to visitors.

Students who visited the table were involved in a wide range of programs to jumpstart their careers, from mechanical engineering to janitorial maintenance, and welding to TV production. Several parts of the state were represented, all the way from St. Augustine, to Kissimmee, to Tampa. It was quite impressive to see a high number of young high school students taking their future very seriously.
FLATE team members also had the opportunity to promote their organization and FAITE to people by presenting information on FLATE’s professional development, FACTE pre conference technical tours and sessions strand.

For more information on SkillsUSA, please visit their webpage here. For more information on other student organizations that FLATE supports, please visit our webpage here or contact Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of FLATE, at

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