Folsom man headed to Brazil with web design contest winner

By: Staff report
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Folsom’s Bill Cullifer, executive director and founder of, is headed for São Paolo, Brazil. He’s accompanying the United States’ gold medal winner of the National Web Design Contest, which challenges high school and college students to create fully functioning Web sites.

The winner is Michael Angel of Essex, VT, who captured the top place at the SkillsUSA National Web Design competition managed by the membership-supported Cullifer founded the Folsom-based Web organization in 1997.

Winning the gold means that Angel is competing in the WorldSkills Americas competition São Paolo, Brazil Nov. 14-18 and will compete again in Leipzig, Germany in the WorldSkills International on July 2-7, 2013.

Cullifer is accompanying Angel to the competitions to both countries.

“It’s an honor to be the technical expert trainer and a mentor to Michael,” Cullifer said. “The WorldSkills competition recognizes the world’s best talents and Michel represents one of the best and the brightest up-and-coming Web professionals. I feel he has a strong chance to be the top winner in the international contest.”

Since 2003, has collaborated with Skills USA in sponsoring the national contest which is held each June in Kansas City, Mo. Purpose of the contest is to evaluate each contestant’s preparation for employment and to recognize outstanding students for excellence and professionalism in the field of Web design, Web development and Webmastering.

“Key milestones including awarding over $1 million of education scholarships for participating students and supporting organizations include, Boston University and Microsoft,” Cullifer said.

Angel, 20, competed against contestants from 50 states while a student at the Computer Animation and Web Page Design program at the Center for Technology in Essex Junction.

He was mentored by two of his former high school teachers, Matt Cronin and Steve Herr, also of Essex Junction. They are supporting Angel with additional technical, creative and soft-skill training ranging from Web design, Web development, Web standards and Web business training as well as up-to-date employability skills.

Angel has received competition blueprints for a variety of Web Design projects that competitors are required to build on their own time and submit for judging by a panel of experts Brazil.

Requirements range from Web accessibility, graphic design and layout, programming, process and professionalism.

The Skills organizations are interrelated. Skills USA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry working together to ensure that American as a skilled workforce. The organization serves more than 300,000 students and instructors and has 13,000 school chapters in 54 state and territorial associations. More than 14,500 instructors and administrators are professional members.

Skills USA is a member of WorldSkills, an International Vocational Training Organization headquartered in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The organization is sponsoring the biennial WorldSkills Competition (WSC) in Leipzig. In that contest, organizers are expecting more than 1,000 competitors from 53 countries competing in 43 official competitions and five demonstration contests.

WorldSkills International, a free-standing, non-political organization, provides a cost-effective means for international government and industry cooperation in achieving high standards and status for vocational education and training on a worldwide basis.

WorldSkills Americas (WSA) is a non-governmental organization, not-for-profit and provides the means for vocational education quality improvement through exchanges between North America, Central America and Caribbean and South America countries.

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