Students Shine on a Global Stage
Walsall College students showcased their skills expertise to a global audience last week, when the UK hosted the world’s greatest skills competition, WorldSkills London 2011.
Thousands of students and apprentices from across the globe competed and showcased their chosen skills at ExCel in London, attended by the Prime Minister, David Cameron and Princess Anne.
College Signmaking students attended the event to showcase their vehicle wrapping skills, along with Art and Design students exhibiting their hugely successful ‘Real Walsall’ photography project and Media students who were filming activities during the day for a documentary.
During the event, Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, was presented with a copy of the Walsall College, ‘Real Walsall’ book by Photography lecturer Phil Brooks. Both Vince Cable and John Hayes , Minister of State for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning, took time from their busy schedules to view and discuss Walsall College’s National Diploma Art and Design students’ visual documentation of Walsall, which includes a foreword from Noddy Holder.
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson spoke to Signmaking staff and students from Walsall College, who were involved in wrapping a Honda car with a vinyl printed design. The Mayor talked to the Level 2 and 3 Signmaking apprenticeship students, who were using the skills they had developed in Walsall College’s Roland DG Academy, about the benefits of apprenticeships, what they bring to businesses and their importance in supporting the aspirations of young people.
Walsall College Media students also provided an excellent film crew and post-production unit, interviewing candidates and visitors to document the event, whilst working alongside their lecturers and other media professionals.
Chosen from hundreds of applications, students were demonstrating their talents to over 150,000 global visitors, including some of the world’s most highly respected skills experts. The WorldSkills London 2011 Competition took place over four days, from 5 – 8 October.
World Skills is one of the biggest events ever to be held at ExCeL London, and saw over 1,000 of the most skilled young people from all corners of the globe battling it out in 46 different skills, competing to be crowned the best of the best in their chosen skill. The UK Team won 13 medals in total, 5 of which were gold. Showcase colleges and training providers were present to inspire the audience and help them to look at the endless possibilities for their future jobs and careers.
Andrew Evans, Commercial Academy Manager at Walsall College said: “To be part of an event which recognises skills at the very highest level is truly aspirational and our students rose to the occasion to put on a truly spectacular show. We are thrilled that our students had the opportunity to showcase their talents at WorldSkills London 2011. It’s fantastic for them to be part of such a prestigious event and gain recognition for all their hard work”.
Tina Cooper, Coordinator for the participation of Walsall College at the event stated: “This was an exceptional event and the size of the venue covered the area of 10 football pitches! The quality of the work in all vocations was excellent. The College students and staff were incredible, working hard over the four days to promote their skills and the College. We are now excited about the opportunity of entering further competitions across many vocations and aim to represent Team UK in Leipzig 2013. This would be the ultimate accolade for all the hard work put in by students and staff across the College.”