Half way through the competition!

From the moment the competition doors opened, Anhembi Park filled with crowds of school students, representatives from vocational education institutions, government and the general public, who were all eager to witness hundreds of competitors from around the world take on day two of the 43rd WorldSkills Competition.

The Skillaroos settled into day two quite well after experiencing some minor hiccups yesterday. “We had some of the competitors making some minor errors which is what we expected. Everyone has settled down now and is far more relaxed” said Rachel Sullivan, Skillaroos Team Leader.

Day two saw the competitors work hard at their projects and determined to complete their modules within the given timeframe. Darren May, Jewellery Expert, said that “the competitors are a lot more at ease so we are expecting a higher standard of work today compared to yesterday”. There were 28 ½ marks up for grabs for the Jewellery competitors compared to the 19 marks available on day one.

“A lot of technical aspects are in the project today. Some very technical saw piecing detail and a particular process that’s unique to jewellery which is called a-jour saw piecing. Which is cutting out decorative square back holes behind the stones. It’s an old technique that was designed to allow a lot of light in behind the stones to make them look brighter. It’s quite challenging” said Darren about the Jewellery project.

Blair Watters, Skillaroo representing Car Painting, started off the day quite confidently with colour matching. “I got them pretty close and that’s where the marks split the field to see who goes in which direction. So I’m pretty happy about that” said Blair. The Car Painting competitors will be assessed on their knowledge and understanding of the application of adhesion of promotors and primers, colour evaluation and adjustment and removal of minor damage and defects from painted and non-painted surfaces.

As the Skillaroos continue to work tirelessly to complete their projects by Saturday, over 800 volunteers have been working for more than a week to ensure that all of the competitors and visitors are cared for and receive the necessary support.

Volunteering is a great learning experience that Andrew Hosking, dedicated WorldSkills Australia volunteer from Gympie, Queensland, knows quite well. Andrew has been involved with WorldSkills Australia for the past fifteen years when he first saw two of his apprentice bricklayers go through a regional and national competition. For over thirty years now Andrew has devoted his time and effort into giving back to the bricklaying industry.

“WorldSkills promotes skill level at the next level up from the end of your apprenticeship. To me, it’s like advancing the knowledge in your trade” said Andrew about his experience with WorldSkills. Andrew continued to explain how he felt about returning again as a volunteer here at the international competition.

“To come here, it’s just such a good experience to meet other people. All of the different nationalities and all of the different levels of skills and also to see how they do my trade in other countries… is amazing”.

Check out the photo highlights and watch how day two unfolded for the Skillaroos here.