Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone
student Thomas Seward from Brynmawr has won a gold medal in the electric final of a national skills competition.
Eighteen –year-old Thomas, who has just completed his level 2 Electrical Installation Diploma
, competed against students from across Wales in a series of electrical challenges within a six-hour time period. The competitors were tasked with interpreting drawings, measuring, marking-out and cutting conduit, trunking and cables.
Thomas said he couldn’t believe it when the judges called his name as the winner.
“I came second in the competition in 2016, but since then I’ve gained so much experience and my confidence has improved which enabled me to pick up the gold medal this year. I also competed against some of the best electricians in the UK at the WorldSkills UK
finals at the NEC last year so I’m looking forward to hopefully returning and showing off my new skills.
“I’ve learnt so much on my apprenticeship with P.I Lewis, I’m determined to work hard and see how far I can go in the competition and my career,” he added.
More than 35 competitions are taking place this year, across a wide range of different vocations from plumbing and beauty therapy to aeronautical engineering and accountancy.
The successful Welsh competitors may go on to challenge youngsters from across the UK at the WorldSkills UK national finals, held at The Skills Show in Birmingham’s NEC this November. Competitors who excel at The Skills Show may then be shortlisted to compete against the world’s most talented young people at the international WorldSkills competition in Kazan, Russia in 2019.
Minister for Skills and Science, Julie James
said: “At the Skills Show last year, the Welsh team topped the leader board of UK regions winning a total of 45 medals, which demonstrates that we’re producing some of the most highly skilled young people across the nation.
“In a year when Wales is celebrating legends of the past, competitions like these showcase the talent across the country and provide a platform for emerging Welsh legends of the future.
“Along with Thomas’s hard work and determination the support from his employer is an important factor in his success, and I would like to extend a special thank you to all the local businesses, schools and colleges across Wales who support these talented individuals.
“I would like to congratulate Thomas on his fantastic achievement and wish him the best of luck in the next stage of the competition and their future career.”