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Apprentice carpenter wins WorldSkills Gold

Created: 06/12/2016

A 20-year-old apprentice carpenter and joiner has showcased his talents for his chosen career by winning Gold at the prestigious WorldSkills competition in Birmingham.

William Campbell, who hails from the village of Donaghcloney in Northern Ireland, came out on top of a field of 500 of his fellow apprentices at the NEC in Birmingham, where he was given the task of assembling a geometrical roof over three days.

Campbell is a student at the South Eastern Regional College (SERC), which also enjoyed other success at the recent WorldSkills event, winning a total of three golds and one silver medal to finish fourth in the overall leaderboard of participating colleges and training providers.

Over 90,000 spectators flocked to the NEC to see the aspiring professionals in action, which only served to increase the pressure on those hoping to prove their abilities. William was not intimidated by the close scrutiny of the judges and audience, however, with his mentor and tutor Rodney McKee noting in this Banbridge Leader article that the youngster had ‘worked very hard preparing for the competition’.

McKee went on to say that Campbell should be ‘very proud’ of his achievements, and that his efforts ‘illustrate how rewarding and exciting a career in carpentry can be’.

The WorldSkills competitions, with regional and national heats taking place globally ahead of the main biennial event, illustrate how offering affordable handyman services or expertise in other trades is a great career option for any young people who are unsure of which career path to follow.

William Greer, the Head of Training at SERC, said that ‘our young people are more ambitious now than ever’, echoing the thoughts of many within practical industries who believe that the recent growth in UK apprenticeships could herald a new golden era for the skilled professions.

The apprentice Campbell has already found employment in his chosen trade and, as his mentor said, will doubtless ‘continue to develop his skills within the industry and have a very successful career’.

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