Illinois students earn awards, career path preparation at SkillsUSA Workforce Championships

They poured concrete to lay bricks. They built tiny buildings, repaired diesel engines, and raced the clock and each other to be the best at more than 150 events — and they just might have found their successful career path in the process.

Students from Chicago’s northern suburbs to deep Southern Illinois arrived in Peoria April 25 for the SkillsUSA Illinois 2024 Championships determined to prove they could be the best at about 150 competitions showcasing their hard work in workforce career development over the past school year.

Some left the event April 27 with awards for their winning work, but all put themselves in position to be winners in their career field.

The championships were again sponsored this year by Caterpillar Inc. and the City of Peoria as thousands filled the Peoria Civic Center for a three-day celebration of students’ and schools’ commitment to career and technical education.

The annual event — held in some form for 60 years now through SkillsUSA — is made possible by hundreds of industry partners, trade associations and labor organizations who volunteer countless hours to judge the competitions as students race against the clock and each other to prove their expertise in manufacturing, electronics, computer-aided drafting, culinary arts, construction, hospitality, human services and much more.

Winners of the statewide Championships will now go on to compete in the national SkillsUSA Championships this June in Atlanta, Georgia.

A full list of winners and top finishers in each category along with a detailed list of the championships’ participating schools is included below. More information is available at

For SkillsUSA Illinois, the event is a true celebration of each school’s year tireless work to help students learn the hard and soft skills they need to succeed in dozens of fields, and a reminder of the work ahead to expand these opportunities to more students and help more employers.

SkillsUSA programming is supported by a state grant under the Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship program. Gov. JB Pritzker has proposed a $10 million increase in CTE funding for next year, and Skills will be advocating for that and other CTE expansion opportunities in the final weeks of the legislature’s spring session. State Sen. Dave Koehler and state Rep. Travis Weaver, both of the Peoria area, were on hand to watch the competitions.

“Each year, the championships remind us just how lucky we are: to have so many students, advisors and team members who fully buy in to our mission to help connect employers with the future skilled workforce; and so many supportive families, volunteers, industry partners and sponsors such as Caterpillar and the City of Peoria who know how important our work is for today and tomorrow,” said SkillsUSA Illinois Executive Director Eric Hill.

“We hope our local legislators who attended can work with us to build on our momentum with more support for CTE programming, and that our students will run full speed ahead in their career paths with the support and confidence from the SkillsUSA experience.”



Thomas Kelly College Prep — Chicago, IL

DuPage County (suburban Chicago)

Addison Trail High School — Addison, IL

Technology Center of DuPage — Addison, IL

Downers Grove South High School — Downers Grove, IL

Elk Grove High School — Elk Grove Village, IL

York Community High School — Elmhurst, IL

Naperville Central High School — Naperville, IL

Neuqua Valley High School — Naperville, IL

Willowbrook High School — Villa Park, IL

Northwest suburbs of Chicago

College of Lake County — Grayslake, IL

Lake County Tech Campus — Grayslake, IL

Hampshire High School — Hampshire, IL

Johnsburg High School — Johnsburg, IL

Marengo Community High School — Marengo, IL

The Community Works, NFP — Waukegan, IL

Northwest Chicago/Cook County suburbs

Maine West High School — Des Plaines, IL

William Rainey Harper College — Palatine, IL

Maine East High School — Park Ridge, IL

Maine South High School — Park Ridge, IL

Triton College — River Grove, IL

Western suburbs of Chicago

Metea Valley High School — Aurora, IL

Waubonsie Valley High School — Aurora, IL

West Aurora High School — Aurora, IL

Central High School — Burlington, IL

Geneva High School — Geneva, IL

Fox Valley Career Center — Maple Park, IL

Oswego East High School — Oswego, IL

Oswego High School — Oswego, IL

St. Charles East High School — St. Charles, IL

Indian Valley Vocational Center — Sandwich, IL

Waubonsee Community College — Sugar Grove, IL

South suburbs of Chicago

Bolingbrook High School — Bolingbrook, IL

Thornton Fractional Center — Calumet City, IL

Bloom Trail High School — Chicago Heights, IL

Homewood/Flossmoor High School — Flossmoor, IL

Lincoln Way East High School — Frankfort, IL

Joliet Central High School — Joliet, IL

Joliet Junior College — Joliet, IL

Joliet West High School — Joliet, IL

Lockport Township High School East — Lockport, IL

Lincoln Way Central High School — New Lenox, IL

Lincoln Way West High School — New Lenox, IL

Carl Sandburg High School — Orland Park, IL

A A Stagg High School — Palos Hills, IL

Peotone High School — Peotone, IL

Peotone Junior High School — Peotone, IL

Romeoville High School — Romeoville, IL

Wilco Area Career Center — Romeoville, IL

Argo Community High School — Summit, IL

Victor J Andrew High School — Tinley Park, IL

Northern Illinois

Kishwaukee Education Consortium — Malta, IL

Kishwaukee College — Malta, IL

Grundy Area Vocational Center — Morris, IL

Galesburg Area Vocational Center — Galesburg, IL

Carl Sandburg College — Galesburg, IL

Kankakee Area Career Center — Bourbonnais, IL

Central Illinois

Bloomington Area Career Center — Bloomington, IL

Bunker Hill High School — Bunker Hill, IL

Clinton High School — Clinton, IL

Clinton Junior High School — Clinton, IL

Danville Area Community College — Danville, IL

East Peoria Community High School — East Peoria, IL

Illinois Central College — East Peoria, IL

Eureka High School — Eureka, IL

Metamora Township High School — Metamora, IL

Morton High School — Morton, IL

Heartland Community College — Normal, IL

Pekin Community High School — Pekin, Il

Peoria Public Schools — Peoria, IL

Carver Community Center — Peoria, IL

Livingston Area Career Center — Pontiac, IL

Capital Area Career Center — Springfield, IL

Lincoln Land Community College — Springfield, IL

Metro East

Belleville West High School — Belleville, IL

Southwestern Illinois College — Belleville, IL

The Center for Academic and Vocational Excellence — Belleville, IL

Roxana Sr High School — Roxana, IL

Southern Illinois

Carbondale Community High School — Carbondale, IL

southern Illinois University-Carbondale — Carbondale, IL

Mount Vernon High School Area Career Center — Mount Vernon, IL

Wabash Valley College — Mt. Carmel, IL

Career Center of Southern Illinois — Red Bud, IL

Sparta High School — Sparta, IL

ABOUT Skills USA Illinois

SkillsUSA Illinois is a state and national membership association serving high school, college, and middle school students who are preparing for careers in trade, technical, and skilled service occupations, including health occupations, and for further education.

SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers, and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. SkillsUSA helps each student excel.

Visit SkillsUSA Illinois online:

About SkillsUSA Illinois and its mission:

Calendar of events and programs:

For interested educators:

For interested students:

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