Barbados??? participation in the WorldSkills competition has already begun to bear fruit for the technical and vocational education sector.

So says Chairman of the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Council, Dr. Hensley Sobers, who was addressing a media launch of the WorldSkills Barbados Competition 2014 at the Courtyard by Marriott today. He pointed out that not only did Barbados cop a silver medal in the Ladies and Men???s Hairdressing category in WorldSkills Americas 2012 but other participants in the local leg found success in their respective fields.

???It is also worthy to note the winner of the Automotive category in the 2012 WorldSkills Barbados Competition, Tevin Callender, gained full time employment with Simpson Motors on the basis of his performance in the competition. Whilst the winner in the Culinary Arts category Sad?? Adkins, was awarded a one-year attachment with the Crane Hotel??? and winner in the Hairdressing category, Clesita Moore, was awarded the opportunity to attend the Premiere Orlando International Beauty Show in June of this year,??? he said.

Dr. Sobers revealed that in an effort to build on the success of the 2013 competition, the TVET Council has expanded the skills area from five to six, to now include Electrical Installation.

He added that there were several other changes in store for the upcoming skills competition, noting that ???the cadre of eligible competitors who represent students between the ages of 16 and 22 and enrolled in our local training institutions has been expanded to include winners of the Duelling Chefs Competition 2013. These winners will compete in the preliminaries and vie for a spot in the finals of WorldSkills Barbados.

???Furthermore, students from private training institutions will also be participating for the first time. This year, Semaj International School of Cosmetology and Trichology will be taking part. This move is in keeping with the TVET Council???s policy of facilitating private training institutions which are registered with the Barbados Accreditation Council and eligible to access the Council???s services such as the Employment and Training Fund.???

Dr. Sobers also noted that in keeping with the WorldSkills Americas format, the local competition has been expanded from three to four days.

WorldSkills Americas 2014 will take place in Bogota, Colombia.

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