SkillsUSA's World Team was featured in the Sunday, September 4 issue of Parade magazine!

A Worldwide Competition Spotlights Skilled Labor

Today, while most of us celebrate Labor Day weekend with hot dogs and sunscreen, Daniel Lehmkuhl, 22, and 16 other young American men and women will be training for the 2011 WorldSkills Competition in London—the Olympics of skilled labor. At a time of sky-high unemployment rates, the competition holds a promise for future jobs: Skilled professions offer some of the best opportunities in the country, according to Thomas Holdsworth of SkillsUSA, the group that fields the national team. “With so many baby boomers retiring, there’s never been a better time to be young and skilled in America,” he said. “These men and women will find jobs—without question. But right now, they are working hard to make us proud in London.”

Starting Oct. 5, SkillsUSA’s World Team will square off against 55 other national teams in areas ranging from welding to cooking to IT networking. Lehmkuhl, who has earned several national medals, will compete in automotive technology—a category in which the U.S. has never won gold. “This is a tremendous privilege,” he says. “It’s a chance to see how I stack up against the greatest autoworkers in the world.” Vince Wright, a 21-year-old from Section, Ala., will test his talent for bricklaying. Wright worked his way through technical school after a teacher inspired him to pursue masonry. “After my first competition, I was hooked on becoming the world’s best bricklayer,” he says. Employers, take note!

—Brad Dunn

To view this article online go to: http://www.parade.com/what-people-earn/americas-skilled-workers/featured/110904-at-last-good-news-on-jobs.html

View WorldSkills Team member Brett Patterson's biography from TTC Harriman go to: http://www.parade.com/what-people-earn/americas-skilled-workers/featured/meet-team-usa.html?index=14

Picture of SkillsUSA's World Team was featured in the Sunday, September 4 issue of Parade magazine!