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Apprentices put to the test in South Cumbria

Published on: Friday 5th June 2015
Categorised under: Work , Apprentices, Barrow, Furness College

SKILLED apprentices were put to the test in a regional challenge.

Furness College staged a North West UK WorldSkills construction (metal work) heat last week.

Five selected engineering apprentices took on the timed assessment to build the base of a model crane in the welding and fabrication workshops.

Five apprentices from BAE Systems and Furness College with individual employers were involved in the seven-hour contest.

Heats are taking place at college’s around the country. Ten winners from across the UK will go through to the national heats at the NECin Birmingham in November.

The best of the best are selected to the UK Squad, with one competitor having the chance to represent the UK in Abu Dhabi in 2017.

Furness College has been rated as outstanding for engineering in its recent Ofsted.

Steve McAloone, the college’s craft engineering curriculum manager, said: “This is the first time we have hosted UK Work Skills. It is an accolade and an honour. We are delighted to host prestigious events. This is an excellent challenge.”

Kevin Scott, who represents UK World Skills as the lead judge for construction (metal work), said: “The competitors here are competing against 80 candidates across the UK. They do not see the drawings until the day.

“The candidates that have been selected will be the best from the college.”

Handmark sheet metal apprentice Lee Schwer, 20, of Askam, said: “It’s good that I have been recognised for my work to be selected to compete in this event. I’d like to be successful, it’s a good opportunity.”

Handmark Engineering manager Carl Knowles said: “We are proud as a company that Lee has been recognised for his skills and selected to compete in this regional competition. We are very proud of him.We are very happy with the college.”

The college was also hosting the regional mechanical engineering (CAD) heat which also featured BAE Systems apprentices.

Mr McAloone thanked the employers for allowing their employees to be involved.

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