Students from Comox Valley and surrounding districts showcased their talents in the skilled trades and technologies at the Skills Canada Competition held at G.P. Vanier Secondary School on March 2.
The event featured students from several School District 71 schools ranging from grades 6 to 12, and there was a buzz in the air as the competitions returned to being held in person after the past two years of virtual activities.
There were 250 competitors in 16 different events, from 19 schools in four school districts (SD 71 – Comox Valley, SD47 – Powell River, SD72 – Campbell River, SD69 – Parksville-Qualicum).
This event provides an opportunity for competitors to show off their skills and encourages participants to pursue careers in good-paying, in-demand fields.
The Skills Canada Competition lets young people from across our schools shine,” said Steve Claassen, trades & ADST coordinator for School District 71. “From welding, carpentry – to website design, computer animation, and electronics and robotics – this event showcases talent, connects youth with employers, and promotes careers in the skilled trades and technologies.”
The competitions celebrate and reward students for excellence in their mastery of skilled trade and technology skills, and create an interactive and engaging environment for the young people who attend the competitions as spectators.
Skills Canada offers experiential learning opportunities including skilled trade and technology competitions for hundreds of thousands of young Canadians through regional, provincial/territorial, national and international events, as well as skilled trade awareness programs.
Winners in each competition area were awarded gold, silver or bronze medals.
Senior event gold medal winners from SD 71 this year were Caleb Elsasser (Vanier) in the automotive event and Austin Harris (Highland) in the electronics event. Both senior event winners are going to the Skills Canada provincials.
Other gold medalists from SD 71 were Timothy Sterk, Olie Phillips, Griffin Moquin and Ewen Chowdury of Highland Secondary in the Jr. Skills – VEX IQ Robotics competition. As well, Blaze Trickett and Quinn Sanderson-Stickley from Ecole Puntledge Park took home gold in Lego Mindstorm Gearbots competition.
Silver medals included Vanier’s Kali Brown in cabinetmaking, Isfeld’s Dalton Weaver in carpenty, Vanier’s Katie Brown in electronics, Highland’s Nate Weaver and Mikayla Roddam in Jr. Skills – Spaghetti, Highland’s Matous Karas, Logan Hildebrandt, Benoit Vaillant and Callum Whyte in Jr. Skills – VEX IQ Robotics, Cumberland’s Blake Peterson, Jonah Lywak and Jasper Sykes in Lego Mindstorm – Gearbots, Huband’s Callum Oxford and Max Bouchard in Lego Mindstorm – Gearbots and Vanier’s Kyle Noll in welding.
Several students also picked up bronze medals: Highland’s Hope Savard for digital art, Aspen Park’s Josh Read in Jr. Skills – Gravity Car, Highland’s Daniel Shea, Cal Kemya and Coltin Young in Jr. Skills – VEX IQ Robotics, Isfeld’s Shane Meyers in Jr. Skills – VEX IQ Robotics and Highland’s Morgan Gadd in welding.
The Skills Canada British Columbia Provincials 2022 will be held in various host sites around the province. The Skills Canada national competition will be held in Vancouver, May 25 to 28 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. WorldSkills 2022 take place in Shanghai between Oct. 12 and 17.