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Gold Medal CIT Students Head to National Training Awards

Published: 24 Oct 2016

World Skills
Image: CIT students Dougal King and Alex Halls' winning landscape construction design

Two CIT students struck gold with the skills and talent in landscape construction earlier this month. Their win means they're in with a good chance of being selected to represent Australia in the 2017 WorldSkills International Competition in Dubai in 2017.

Warm congratulations to CIT Landscape Construction students Dougal King and Alexander Halls that jointly won gold medals at the 2016 WorldSkills Australia National Competition in Melbourne this month.

Dougal and Alexander won the team event for their beautiful, complex out door garden landscape design that involved building an outdoor timber table, laying paving, building a mortared and rendered block wall, a dry pack stone wall, and creating a mulched garden with turf - all according to industry health and safety standards while ensuring the worksite was kept clean and clear.

CIT is optimistic the two will be chosen to join the Australia team competing in the biannual WorldSkills International Competition in Dubai on 14-19 October 2017.

Congratulations also to talented CIT Joinery student Timothy Bishell who was awarded a silver medal in recognition of his skills. Tim's winning project involved building a step ladder using a number of complex joints and techniques.

CIT cabinetmaking student, Craig Jones, can also be proud of his bronze medal awarded for his skill and talent for creating a beautiful wall cabinet using skills he has learnt during his apprenticeship.
The four CIT students were among Canberra's team of 16 that headed to Melbourne to participate in the biannual competition in Melbourne that drew more than 500 apprentices, trainees and students aged 16-24 from across the country.

All up the Canberra regional team brought home five medals. This is the best result the Canberra regional team has had in more than 10 years in the WorldSkills Australia National Competition.

Daramalan College student Celina Vecchi, mentored by CIT teachers, brought home silver in recognition of her business services skills and talents in the Vocational Education and Training in Schools category.

WorldSKills competitions involve 60 trades and skills, from automotive to welding, building to business, client services, computing, and floristry to fashion technology. The competitions aim to develop and nurture young people's skills by celebrating excellence and offering them a chance to showcase their trade skills and talents. Its message, "empowerment through skills", has attracted 76 country members including Australia.

CIT teacher, Martin Stallard said this year's Canberra team was one of the most successful at a national WorldSkills event coming in the top five of 30 regions across Australia.

"We should congratulate the whole team for working so hard to achieve excellence within their trades and skills," he said. "We are extremely proud of the Canberra regional team. They were a pleasure to work with and mentor."

Martin noted that every trade and skill had a CIT mentor helping and coaching the students, including Canberra team leaders Rebecca Lyons, Michael Blasch and Milan Rajic whose CIT students brought home medals.

Other CIT teachers are also deeply involved in WorldSkills competitions, volunteering their time to act as judges.

This year CIT's Scott Umbers was Chief Judge for landscape construction; Don White was a chief judge for plastering; Martin Stallard was a wall and floor tiling chief judge; Amelia Scicluna was a business services judge; and Scott Leighton was a carpentry judge.

Australia was ranked 12th following the last WorldSkills international competition in São Paulo, Brazil in 2015.

WorldSkills Australia says it's committed to selecting the strongest team possible in the hope it will return Australia to the top 10 ranked countries internationally.