UTC Sheffield engineering students took home a haul of medals from the WorldSkills UK competition. The prestigious event, held at The Skills Show careers exhibition in Birmingham from 17-19 November, covered skill areas in construction and engineering through to creative and hospitality. The UTC Sheffield students competed in four teams of two and won a gold and silver medal in industrial control, and a silver and bronze medal in mechatronics.
116 colleges, employers and universities took part in the competition that used real work projects to test competitors’ knowledge, raising their skills levels as they embark on their careers. The results place the UTC as one of the three joint best performers among the English institutions that competed. Overall, the UTC Sheffield team is ranked as joint fifth in the UK medal table.
Alex Reynolds, Principal, UTC Sheffield City Centre campus, said:
Our students rank among the nation’s most highly skilled young people and I am extremely proud of them. They are developing the skills and qualities needed by employers and this award winning national recognition is testament to that.
Student Daniel Pickering, 17, who won a gold medal, said:
The competition was very challenging and such a different experience to anything I have done before. The training at the UTC with the employers and my experience of industrial software was really put to the test throughout the competition. I really had to draw on all of my problem solving skills. Winning a gold medal is one of my greatest achievements and I am so proud to be recognised as one of the best in the UK.
Speaking about his silver medal achievement, student Michal Krol, 18, added:
The competition was extremely challenging. We had to compete at such a high level against the other teams, the pressure at times was immense and we had to really focus to ensure we completed all the tasks. I am so proud of my silver medal. To beat teams from industry at the highest possible level has been fantastic.
During the competition, students build attributes valued by employers including teamwork, prioritisation of tasks, time management and working under pressure. Richard Wright, Executive Director, Sheffield Chamber of Commerce, said:
This proves why any student and parent should seriously consider a UTC at the age of 14. Business values vocational and practical training for many careers just as much as academic qualifications. These students proved the technical and practical skills that translate straight into the work environment. We can’t wait to employ students from a UTC.
For more information about UTC Sheffield, visit www.utcsheffield.org.uk