Cuesta College Career Technical Education (CTE) student Michael Mullen recently represented the United States in the WorldSkills Americas competition held in Bogota, Colombia, and placed second in auto services technology.

The competition, held April 1 – 6, served as a platform to improve skills and exchange information and knowledge between the countries and regions in North America, South America, Central America and the Caribbean. The San Luis Obispo resident will be competing in the WorldSkills International Competition in August of 2015, which will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and involve more than 60 countries.

“Competing at WorldSkills Americas was great practice for WorldSkills International because both are run in the same format,” said Mullen. “At the international level, the competitions are organized very differently and the degree of difficulty is much higher than in the U.S., so this was a great way for me to see what I will be up against in Brazil.”

In Colombia, Mullen competed against eight countries in the auto services technology event, which involved six different three-hour stations. His ranking places him second best in the Western Hemisphere.

“I think my performance in Colombia helps showcase the quality of education I have received at Cuesta,” said Mullen. “It was an honor to be able to represent my country and school.”

Currently, the 20-year-old also serves as California’s Post-Secondary President of SkillsUSA, which is a partnership of students, teachers and industry representatives, working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. In June of 2013, Mullen placed second in automotive services technology at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, qualifying him to compete at the upcoming 2015 WorldSkills International competition. In the future, Mullen says he plans to transfer to a university, finish his mechanical engineering degree, and have a career in automotive engineering and design.


Lauren Milbourne / (805) 546-3108 / Lauren_milbourne@cuesta.edu / Posted: 4/23/14