The heat is on: National competitors train for their shot at greatness

With just four months to go before the 2016 WorldSkills Australia National Competition, Melbourne, competitors from across the country are hard at work training for their shot at greatness this October.

Several training days have been held over the past few months on a skill, regional and state level, where competitors can meet their fellow teammates and dedicate some intensive training time with their mentors.

One such session was held in Melbourne last Friday when International Expert Donna DeMaria organised and ran a training session for several of this year’s Hairdressing competitors. Donna decided to make the most of the competitors and mentors being in town for salon industry event Hair Expo Australia 2016 by dedicating the Friday to training for the National Competition. Renowned hairdressing training provider Pivot Point Academy provided the group with the facility and resources required to make the session possible. The competitors also benefited from the experience of seasoned experts such as Donna as well as 2011 Skillaroo and Bronze medallist Alexia Scott and 2015 Skillaroo and Medallion of Excellence winner, Hayley Parker, who were also on hand to mentor the competitors.

“It is fantastic to see so many individuals and organisations dedicating their time and expertise to nurturing the next generation of a skilled workforce,” says General Manager Brigitte Collins.

“The competitors give their time, their employers allow their apprentices time off to go to these sessions, and mentors, former competitors and industry leaders provide the competitors with valuable ideas and insight. In that way, they all work together to increase the quality of skills at the National Competition and set the bar within their industry.”

Newly appointed CEO Brett Judd is eager to see the competitors and their mentors in action as he attends a TAFE NSW training camp for NSW-based competitors held at TAFE NSW New England Institute, Tamworth Campus on 20 June. This event is one of several stops Brett will be undertaking over the coming months as he settles into his new role and meets with the dedicated individuals and organisations that make events like the National Competition possible.

“This is about meeting and getting to know our volunteers across the country,” says Brett. “It’s important to talk to the people involved with WorldSkills Australia, listen to their feedback and give everyone a chance to share their own visions for the future.

“Then, we can discover together the best way to move forward and make a difference for the organisation and the sector as a whole.”