Comox Valley secondary students shone at Skills Canada BC’s 2018 provincial competition, held April 18 in Abbotsford.
The annual competition brought together more than 600 students from across B.C. to compete in challenges related to fields as diverse as aerospace, automotive, 3D Animation, baking, welding, and robotics.
Valley students captured impressive finishes in five of the categories they competed in.
G.P. Vanier Secondary School’s Josh Child won Gold in electronics, while Reanne Matte and Will Enns took silver in 2D Animation. Mark R. Isfeld Secondary student Eony Kim took silver in website design, while Kalissa Heinrich won bronze in photography. Finally, Highland Secondary students Sawyer McClellan and Zane Henderson captured gold and bronze in mini-sumo robotics.
“It’s amazing to see the skill level of students at this competition and realize that these kids are our future designers, coders, fabricators, and troubleshooters,” said Mark R. Isfeld technology teacher Steve Claassen, who has been involved with Skills Canada for 18 years.
Last year, Highland Secondary graduate Judd Foster represented Canada at the WorldSkills competition in Abu Dhabi after winning gold in the electronics category at the Skills Canada competition the year before.
Gold-medal winners will advance to the Skills Canada National Competition, which will run June 4 and 5 in Edmonton.
“Our Valley is fortunate to have some very skilled students and most years at least one reaches the nationals and comes back with a medal,” said Claasen.
Skills Canada BC provides opportunities for thousands of students to compete, watch competitors in action, participate in Try-a-Trade activities, visit the Pathways to Careers Showcase, or participate in the Women in Trades and Technology Conference.
Skills BC’s goal is to showcase skilled trades and technologies as potential careers to the thousands of young people who attend the competitions annually.