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Center for Advanced Technical Studies honored as a Model of Excellence school by SkillsUSA

For Immediate Release – May 27, 2020



Center for Advanced Technical Studies honored as a Model of Excellence school by SkillsUSA

IRMO –The Center for Advanced Technical Studies (The Center) has been named as a Models of Excellence school for 2020 by SkillsUSA.


The Center is one of 24 schools nationwide to receive this honor and the only school in South Carolina to receive it.  The annual program recognizes the exceptional integration of personal, workplace and technical skills into SkillsUSA chapter activities.  This is the highest honor bestowed on chapters by SkillsUSA, which is among the largest student organizations for career and technical education.


“I cannot stress enough how big a deal it is to be named one of the Top 24 Chapters in the country,” said Joe Chapman, The Center’s SkillsUSA advisor.  “To do it in our first attempt and to be the first in the state of South Carolina to accomplish this goes to show how dedicated our students, parents, staff, and sponsors have been to the success of our chapter.  I am bursting with pride for all of these kids, they are truly showing how bright their future will be."


Chelle Travis, executive director of SkillsUSA, added, “Our Models of Excellence represent the very best in chapter achievement and community involvement.  These students represent America’s future skilled workforce and are future leaders in their local communities.  It is a tremendous honor for these chapters and the recognition validates these outstanding SkillsUSA programs.”


The top 24 SkillsUSA chapters selected as Models of Excellence will be evaluated in June for top honors.  A panel of judges will evaluate each of these highest-level schools based on their goals, plan of action, results, evaluation and SkillsUSA Framework integration.  Business and industry partners will conduct finalist interviews with students and advisors, and then help select the top three schools to be recognized on June 26 during the National Leadership and Skills Conference Virtual Recognition Session.  The focus of Models of Excellence is student-led activation.  These students learn and practice the skills that every employer seeks, including leadership, initiative, communication, teamwork and problem solving by taking the lead on all SkillsUSA activities.  Their SkillsUSA instructors take the education of these students to the next level by guiding them, but never doing the work for them, elevating learning from classroom instruction to successful application of skills.


"This is an outstanding achievement for our students at The Center,” said Dr. Al Gates, School District Five director of career and technical education.  “Recognition by SkillsUSA as a Models of Excellence chapter means that our students exemplify the qualities and characteristics of the SkillsUSA framework emphasizing personal skills, professional skills, and technical skills grounded in academics. We are very proud of our chapter members, our chapter officers, and our chapter advisor, Mr. Joseph Chapman."


SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of education and industry founded in 1965 to strengthen our nation's skilled workforce. SkillsUSA has more than 372,000 annual members nationwide in high schools, middle schools and colleges, covering over 130 trade, technical and skilled service occupations, and is recognized by the U.S. Departments of Education and Labor as integral to career and technical education. With the addition of our alumni, membership last year was 434,141. For more information please visit,