State Updates

Executive Update: September 28, 2017 

Important Dates
Sept. 23-27: Washington Leadership Training Institute (WLTI) – Alexandria, VA
Sept. 28-29: Advisor Development Conference (ADC) – Lisle, IL
Oct. 7: SkillsUSA Illinois Board of Directors Meeting – Pekin, IL
Oct. 14-15: State Officer Training & L.E.A.D. Conference Meeting – Pekin, IL 

Executive Director’s Report
Welcome to the 2017-2018 Year!
On behalf of everyone at SkillsUSA Illinois, welcome to the 2017-2018 year. We are very excited to kick off a new year and continue to improve and partner with you as you continue your great work with students.

SkillsUSA is the answer for preparing students to be JOB READY DAY ONE! With you, we seek to empower our students to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens. We do this by using the SkillsUSA Framework to enhance and develop our students; equally valuing Personal Skills, Workplace Skills, and Technical Skills Grounded in Academics. 

Whether you are a longtime supporter of SkillsUSA or just starting to learn about how we are starting to solve our country’s workforce shortage, this video (made by our students) perfectly explains the need for SkillsUSA in classrooms across Illinois. 

Collision Repair Education Foundation’s 3rd Annual Cars, Careers and Celebrities Expo
This past week, SkillsUSA Illinois participated in the Collision Repair Education Foundation’s 3rd Annual Cars, Careers and Celebrities Expo at the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet Illinois. Over 600 students from across Illinois and seven other states attended the event. This event was open to all Collision and Automotive students as a free event. SkillsUSA Illinois hosted the interview tent and, with the help of industry supports, facilitated over 250 interviews. 

This was a great event and I would like to thank all the great partners that helped CREF put on this amazing event! 

 Here are a few pictures from the event.  

Busy day at the Speedway!

Posted by Collision Repair Education Foundation on Friday, September 15, 2017

Supporting Our Local Chapters, One Dollar At A Time
SkillsUSA IS the answer to this countries skills gap, but don’t listen to me, listen to Mike Rowe testify before Congress and on Fox Business about the impact that SkillsUSA has on our future workforce.  


It is no secret that the State of Illinois is in financial needs. Schools are struggling to maintain current offerings and dealing with hard decisions of keeping programs or scaling back. This year, SkillsUSA Illinois is focusing on supporting our local chapters with our Red Jacket Scholarship. These $500 scholarships will go to help support our local schools with costs associated with SkillsUSA. These grants will support schools across the state, but we need YOUR help.  

Click here to learn more about our Red Jack Scholarships and submit your pledge to help our local chapters continue to grow!  

Future Events
It is hard to believe, but planning for the 2018 State Leadership & Skills Conference is underway. We are anticipating one of the largest State Leadership & Skills Conference in our history! This year our conference will be April 19-21 at the Bank of Springfield Center, in Springfield, Illinois. We will have more information coming about that event in future updates, but if you would like more information please let us know. We look forward to introducing new partners and building opportunities for our students.  

L.E.A.D. Conference provides students with opportunities to build early leadership skills and establish long rewarding tactics around responsibility and teamwork. Students build connections with students across the state as they create work groups with diversification in ages, skill areas, and school locations. Students learn first-hand what team skills and responsibilities are about. They work together to complete leadership tasks while drawing from the talents of the participants, dealing with personality conflicts, taking risks in new situations, practicing speaking and presentation skills, all while having fun. 

Our L.E.A.D. Conference will be held at the Tinley Park Convention Center on December 7-9. We will be looking for potential interviewers to assist us with the mock interview session. If you are interested in assisting with these interviews, please email 

Here is a link to our 2017-2018 Calendar for access to all events that are happening around the state this year.  

2017-2018 Calendar

We look forward to working with you this year!  

All the best,

Eric Hill
Executive Director
SkillsUSA Illinois

State Update: September 19, 2017

Elgin Community College’s Mark Carriveau Nominated to SkillsUSA Illinois, Inc. Board of Directors


Pekin, Ill., September 19, 2017 – SkillsUSA Illinois, Inc. Board of Directors welcomed their newest member, Mr. Mark Carriveau, to serve as Region 1 & 2 representative for a two-year term at their last board meeting on August 26th. In his role, Carriveau will further the association’s mission of developing leaders for tomorrow and ensuring America has a skilled workforce.

SkillsUSA Illinois, a state affiliated association of the national SkillsUSA, serves high school and college students and professional members who are enrolled in technical, skilled and service occupations. SkillsUSA Illinois has approximately 3,500 members in chapters throughout the state. As a member of the SkillsUSA Illinois Board of Directors, Carriveau will help the board to better serve its more than 130 chapters across the state. The board will also be responsible for highlighting SkillsUSA opportunities for high school and college students in Illinois and creating programs for the association to better enhance the communication between volunteers and schools. SkillsUSA works tirelessly to build awareness of the high demand jobs that are available in the over 150 industries that it represents. SkillsUSA Illinois’ Board of Directors consist of regional representatives who represent the schools, teachers and students in their region and business and industry partners. The mixture allows SkillsUSA Illinois to stay aligned with both industry and educations needs as the organization expands and enhances their impact on members.

SkillsUSA Illinois Executive Director Eric Hill noted, “I would like to welcome Mark to our Board of Directors. As a longtime supporter of SkillsUSA, and now a full-time photographer and part-time faculty member Elgin Community College, Mark will help in our efforts to support the future members of SkillsUSA. He will be a valuable addition to our board and will be a critical member as we work towards taking this organization to the next level and enhance our ability to support our secondary and post-secondary schools, instructors and students.”

Carriveau will bring his extensive knowledge and expertise in the photo journalism to SkillsUSA and will create connections and opportunities to new industries that are currently not being targeted. As a past member of SkillsUSA (then VICA), Carriveau can relate to the mission of SkillsUSA and ensure that it is continued. Carriveau is a former member of Technology Center of Dupage’s (formally DAVEA) SkillsUSA Chapter. His role as photographer is to handle all roles of photography for marketing, advertising, news and social media. He also serves as board secretary for the University Photographers Association of America.

About SkillsUSA
SkillsUSA helps students discover and grow their career passions. As a nationwide partnership of students, instructors and industry working together, SkillsUSA works to ensure America has a skilled workforce. It helps every student excel. The nationwide career and technical education student organization annually serves more than 300,000 high school, college and postsecondary students—and their instructors—in technical, skilled, and service occupation instructional programs. Career and technical education is learning that works for America. SkillsUSA has the active support of more than 600 corporations, trade associations, business and labor unions at the national level. Over 11 million people have been annual members of SkillsUSA since its founding as the Vocational Industrial Clubs of America on May 8, 1965. SkillsUSA programs teach leadership, citizenship and character development to complement technical skill training. The organization emphasizes respect for the dignity of work, ethics, workmanship, scholarship and safety. For more information, go to: