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WorldSkills students savour Nationals experience

Thirteen South Regional TAFE students participated in the WorldSkills Australia National Championships and Skills Show.

Feedback from the students indicated that they loved the competition and relished the chance to compete at a national level.

The national event was held at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, although many of the other States' teams could not compete (because of COVID lockdowns). The WA teams were still able to compete and teams from Hobart flew into Perth for the competition. Queensland and the Northern Territory competed from Brisbane, while some States have delayed their events.

South Regional TAFE Training Manager Anita Host was extremely proud of the team of students and staff representing the college.

“They supported each other, worked effectively as a team and were wonderful ambassadors for the college," Ms Host said.

The South Regional TAFE students competing in the event were: Timothy Pratt (bricklaying), Dylan Rader (cabinet making), Sophie Kinson (hairdressing), Brody Stallard (welding), Brody Johnston (welding), Jordan Murphy (cookery), Eva Brittain (restaurant services), Benjamin Willmott from Newton Moore Senior High School (VETiS bricklaying), Django Taylor from Margaret River Senior High School (VETiS construction), Imogen Hunt and Sky Burgess from Bunbury Senior High School (VETiS food and beverage), Rachel Taylor from Our Lady of Mercy College and Jessica Cherry from Bunbury Senior High School (VETiS hairdressing).

Staff who represented the college included:

  • Joe Estermann, cabinet making judge (WorldSkills Hall of Fame)
  • Johnese Mullen, hospitality judge (WorldSkills Hall of Fame)
  • Mark Baker, brick and blocklaying judge (WorldSkills Hall of Fame)
  • Nick Johnston, cabinet making judge (WorldSkills International Competitor as an SR TAFE student)
  • Emily Parslow, hairdressing judge
  • Amanda Smith, cookery judge
  • Kathryn Tindal-Davies, cookery mentor
  • Adam Mathews, carpentry judge.

Former South Regional TAFE students included Hairdressing judges Jessamy Gardiner and Alexis Scott (WorldSkills International Competitor) and Bricklaying competitor Nik Foster.

Carpentry VETiS construction competitor Django Taylor, 17, put his skills to the test during his first national WorldSkills competition.

“I learned so much from this experience,” he said.

“Representing your State is amazing. I would recommend WorldSkills to other students because you get to represent your trade and make some impressive industry contacts.”

Cookery apprentice Jordan Murphy, who also won a gold medal in the Australian Culinary Federation Apprentice of the Year competition in June, said it was a very exciting experience.

“Being involved in such a high-calibre event gave me a chance to learn different techniques in cookery that I don’t usually use at work,” she said.

“It also gave you the skills to learn how to cope in stressful situations and not get distracted by what’s going on around you.”

The medallists will not be known until the other states run their competitions.

The Team WA carpentry team are pictured speaking to Industry representatives with lecturer Adam Mathews.