IT-savvy Swansea students claim skills award
08 April 2013
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) students from Gower College Swansea have been recognised as two of Wales' most promising computer wizards after claiming gold and silver in the final of a prestigious all-Wales skills competition.
17-year old Jack Davies from Gorseinon, a BTEC ICT student at the college, battled it out with other finalists from across the country to be named Skills Competition Wales winner in Web Design.
Runner-up was fellow Gower College Swansea student Jacob Pietrzyk from Llanelli, with Matthew Bevan from Coleg Llandrillo taking the bronze award.
Backed by the Welsh Government and the European Social Fund, the annual Skills Competition Wales events are designed to showcase excellence in vocational learning and promote the importance of developing a highly skilled workforce.
Computer savvy Jack said: "I have been into computers for as long as I can remember, so I wanted to pursue it as a career. Technology is constantly advancing and I want to stay up to date with the new developments and so I am hoping to go on and study web design at University."
Silver winner Jacob said: "I am really happy to have the silver but I am hoping to try again next year and try for gold."
Along with the other contestants, both Jack and Jacob were asked to design and construct a fully-functioning website about the new Welsh National Rally, designed to target non-rally goers and encourage new fans in the 14-24 age range. The students were marked on their skilled use of animation, use of CSS to design the web pages and the overall presentation of the completed site.
The EU-backed Skills Competition Wales aims to find the country's most talented trainees across a wide range of skills, including fields such as catering, automotive engineering, aerospace, construction skills, catering, accountancy, media and information technology.
Colleges, Sector Skills Councils and training providers host competition finals across Wales offering star learners the chance to test, benchmark and raise their skills levels.
Jack and the winners of all-Wales finals in other skills may have the chance to progress to WorldSkills UK finals and possibly even to the WorldSkills International event at Rio de Janeiro in 2015.
Jeff Cuthbert, Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology, congratulated the successful contestants. He said: "These competitions are an excellent opportunity for up-and-coming skilled workers in Wales to stretch themselves and really develop their abilities within their chosen fields. These competitions cover many important sectors of the economy and we aim to encourage young people entering these occupations to benchmark their skills against others in Wales, the UK or indeed internationally."
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