Career Readiness and Employability Credential Program Announced

Share Article

SkillsUSA announces the Career Essentials Credential to address U.S. skills gap.

News Image
The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential will ensure that students are career-ready and that they are prepared to be future company and community leaders

SkillsUSA, an innovator in educational resources for career and technical education (“CTE”) students, today announced the official launch of the SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential. This new curriculum and credential program provides CTE students with the foundational skills, attitudes, and values necessary to ensure that America has the skilled workforce it needs to combat the growing U.S. skills gap and to stay competitive on a global scale.

The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential is obtained through successful completion of the SkillsUSA Career Essentials suite, an employability skill-building curriculum. SkillsUSA based the curriculum on key career-readiness skills that were identified as most needed for new hires through gathered data and scientific research.1 Successful completion of the program indicates students’ proficiency in the understanding and application of career readiness competencies as well as demonstrates their ability to successfully contribute to their place of work.

“The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential will ensure that students are career-ready and that they are prepared to be future company and community leaders,” explained Timothy W. Lawrence, executive director of SkillsUSA. “We applaud all of our partners for stepping forward to work together and support the SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential, and we are confident that this certification program will be transformational for industries across the United States.”

The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential is a significant, mission-critical project for SkillsUSA. It is backed by a large investment of over $1 million from corporate America as well as supported by the U.S. departments of Labor and Education, making it one of the one of the largest collaborative public-private partnerships in workforce development history. In its early phases, the SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential has already been validated by the following companies: 3M, Toyota U.S.A., Toyota Motor North America, U.S. Coast Guard, Volvo Construction Equipment, Alabama Community College System, National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), CareerSafe LLC, CBRE, Centuri, Coalition on Adult Basic Education (COABE), IAA, Kreg Tools, Magna International, National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER), North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, and Spirit AeroSystems.

“The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential will play an integral role in developing the skilled workforce that our industry and our country needs,” said Rose Bauss, general manager for Toyota. “Toyota is proud to be one of the first supporters of the Career Essentials Credential, and we look forward to how it will reshape the future of the U.S. workforce.”

The SkillsUSA Career Essentials Credential was announced during a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Sept. 25. Attendees included John P. Pallasch, assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (ETA), and Diane Auer Jones, principal deputy under secretary for the U.S. Department of Education, as well as SkillsUSA business and education partners.

For more information about SkillsUSA Career Essentials, contact Gayle Silvey at

About SkillsUSA
SkillsUSA is a nonprofit partnership of education and industry founded in 1965 to strengthen our nation’s skilled workforce. Driven by employer demand, SkillsUSA helps students develop necessary personal and workplace skills along with technical skills grounded in academics. This SkillsUSA Framework empowers every student to succeed at work and in life, while helping to close the “skills gap” in which millions of positions go unfilled. Through SkillsUSA’s championships program and curricula, employers have long ensured schools are teaching relevant technical skills, and with SkillsUSA’s new credentialing process, they can now assess how ready potential employees are for the job. SkillsUSA has more than 365,000 annual members nationwide in high schools, colleges and middle schools, 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. For more information:

1 Karzunina, D., Moran, J., Philippou, G., & West, J. (2017). The global skills gap: student misperceptions and institutional solutions [White paper]. Retrieved from

SkillsUSA contacts:
Jane Short or Karen Kitzel or

Maroon PR contact:
Sami Benedict

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Jane DeShong Short
+1 703-737-0612
Email >

Karen Kitzel
Follow >
Visit website