Talented students from partner colleges in Cheshire and Warrington are battling it out in WorldSkills-style competitions designed to raise skill levels to meet employer needs.

The Cheshire Skills Competition is a new collaboration between Reaseheath College in Nantwich, Warrington & Vale Royal College, Macclesfield College and Cheshire College South & West which aims to deliver a joined-up approach to the sharing of good practice and expertise. An inter-college steering group has been formed to run skills competitions as a way of developing world class skills, confidence and life skills in students.

The Cheshire Skills Competition was launched last week with categories for automotive, construction and hair and beauty students. The automotive category brought together selected motor vehicle students in Reaseheath’s industry standard Centre for Advanced Engineering and Agri-Technology.

The students, who are all studying a Level 3 or Level 2 Diploma in Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repair, faced a practical challenge in which they removed and replaced a cylinder head gasket on a stand mounted engine. They were judged on a range of skills including their use of technical data, use of tools and equipment, awareness of health and safety and on the overall quality of their work. The students were then quizzed by a panel of professionals to test their depth of knowledge.

Awards went to:

  • Team with the greatest knowledge: Ben Hassall and Connor Heath (Reaseheath College)
  • Student showing most endeavour: Mo Shah (Macclesfield College)
  • Best overall performing college Ben Powell and Ollie Abbott (Warrington & Vale Royal College)

Unfortunately students from Cheshire College South & West were unable to compete due to illness.

Reaseheath’s Engineering Curriculum Area Manager Savraj Baines said: “This has been a fantastic opportunity to work together with other colleges from across the region to encourage young people to achieve their full potential through competition while also raising their skills levels to meet employer needs.

“We believe participation in local skills and WorldSkills competitions inspire young people to achieve excellence. Our aim is to provide Cheshire students with improved employability skills and life changing opportunities, while employers will benefit from an increased pool of highly skilled individuals who will add value to their businesses and contribute to the wider region’s prosperity.

“The standard and effort made by both motor vehicle students and their colleges was extremely high and it was difficult for the judges to decide on the winners.”

Warrington & Vale Royal College hosted the construction category while Macclesfield College ran the hair and beauty challenge.

Watch the video at https://bit.ly/CheshireSkillsAutomotive