LOUISVILLE, Ky. (June 17, 2019) —The city is ready to host the world’s largest showcase of skilled trades when the 55th annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference returns to the Kentucky Exposition Center June 24-28. The event brings with it an estimated economic impact of $26.7 million to Louisville.
More than 19,000 students including middle, high and college students along with teachers, education leaders and representatives from 600 national corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions participate in the event, which houses 103 hands-on skill and leadership competitions.
The conference highlight is the annual SkillsUSA Championships, June 26-27. During the competition, top career and technical students participate contests, representing a wide range of technical, skilled, service and health occupations. These contests cover 1.4 million square feet or 20 football fields and are across several divisions including Skilled and Technical Sciences, Leadership Development, Occupationally related and demonstration contests. Some examples of each are:
Skilled and Technical Sciences: Aviation Maintenance Technology, Masonry, Web Design
Leadership Development: Employment Application Process, Prepared Speech, Quiz Bowl
Occupationally Related: Engineering Technology/Design, Entrepreneurship, Medical Terminology
The SkillsUSA Championships requires an immense amount of equipment and materials including 2,000 computers, 12,500 bricks, 1,500 blocks, over 60 stoves and ovens, more than 25 refrigerators, over 100 welders and greater than 50 manufacturing machines and complete laboratories for machining, welding, auto repair and painting.
“We really hope that people will come and bring their whole family for an entertaining and inexpensive experience,” said Karen Williams, president & CEO of Louisville Tourism. “These competitions are at the forefront of their industry. Our locals and regional visitors are getting to see this firsthand, which really enhances the impact it will have on our city.
SkillsUSA community service projects are an instrumental component of the event as they volunteer throughout the week. This year’s projects include:
Blood Drive: June 27, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Kentucky Exposition Center North Wing entrance (Bloodmobile)
The public can donate blood to the local community via the Kentucky Blood Center.
Service Projects: June 28, 9 a.m.-11:30am
An expected 400 SkillsUSA students provide service to the Louisville community on “Build Skills — Do Good — Complete the Cycle” by assembling 80 bicycles to be presented to local children in just two hours! The true impact of their effort will be revealed when the bikes are donated on-site to deserving children from the local Louisville community.
SkillsUSA Championships is free and open to the public Wednesday, June 26 and Thursday, June 27 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Parking is $10 per car, $20 for a bus.
SkillsUSA’s mission is to empower its members to become world-class workers, leaders and responsible American citizens. SkillsUSA improves the quality of America’s skilled workforce through a structured program of citizenship, leadership, employability, technical and professional skills training. Founded in 1965, the organization has served 12.5 million members, and more than 360,000 advisors and students participate each year.