Attracting young people into our industry: Help to Take Skills USA to the Next Level
Tim Dwyer is an automotive education specialist at ConsuLab, a manufacturer, and provider of automotive training aids. After 25 years of ownership, he sold his business Superwrench Import Auto in Tulsa, OK to pursue a teaching career at Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology. There he helped start and instruct the Pro-Tech Automotive Internship program for 12 years. Hear Tim’s previous episodes HERE.
Key Talking Points:
- Skills USA Nationals has 103 different contests going on at once. It is all Career and Technical Education under one roof (CTE)
- Perfectly placed but mostly unrecognized by many in our industry
- Skills begin locally, then through state and national
- Over 20 football fields full of Skills test stations
- There is also a World Skills every other year
- Some countries offer award money and lifetime jobs for the winners of this contest
- $36 Million is spent to put on this event
- GM donated a 2018 Malibu to the gold medal winner’s program
- We need to start bragging about these events that will help attract young people into our industry
- Designing a skills contest:
- Attention to detail
- All stations need to appropriately challenging
- Consistently repeatable
- Have a real-world application
- Equipment, tools, and information
- Bond with parents and a reason to go to school
- Skills show a career path
- Instructors need to step up their game
- Consulab supports Skills at many levels
- As an industry, we must support this program
- Volunteer to judge a local contest
- Offer financial support to help pay for travel to the next level contests
- Some state and local winner don’t go to the next level because of funding issues
- We should offer an additional celebration of excellence to all participants and the winners
- Shops can promote Skills in their own network and community
- This is a spectator sport
- A special thanks to Tim Dwyer for his contribution to the aftermarket.
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