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Skilled trades banners to be raised at Ontario colleges

By Adam Freill   

Construction Labour Skills Development

Skills Ontario celebrates bronze-medal successes of Ontario competitors while announcing new skilled trades scholarship.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford congratulates Malcom Matwijec as the student’s WorldSkills Medal Recognition banner is unveiled. (Photo courtesy of Skills Ontario)

Malcom Matwijec, a student at Centennial College who competed in the Heavy Vehicle Technology competition at WorldSkills, and Emma Kilgannon, a recent graduate of Humber College who competed in the Pâtisserie and Confectionary competition, were on hand at Humber College as they were presented with official WorldSkills Medal Recognition banners to hang proudly in their institutions.

Both won bronze in their respective trades at the international competitions this past fall. They were part of a group of seven Ontario competitors who were on Team Canada at the WorldSkills Special Edition. The special edition competition was held in 15 countries across 26 different cities.

Skills Ontario explained that institutions hang banners from provincial, national and world skills competitions in much the same manner as a banner from a championship in a sporting competition to display the achievement of skilled trade and technology students.

The competitors from Ontario, who represented their college, as well as the province and nation, included: Spencer Chandu-Lall from Loyalist in Mechanical Engineering CAD, Daniel Kiss from Conestoga College in CNC Milling, Abigail King from Fanshawe College in Autobody Repair, Cameron Krause from Conestoga College in Bricklaying and Akshay Vineet from Sheridan College in Cloud Computing.


Ian Howcroft, the CEO of Skills Ontario, said the experience Kilgannon and Matwijec had at the competition is an example of the rewards from pursuing a career in the skilled trades and technologies.

“Skills Ontario is proud of the success Emma and Malcolm have achieved at the WorldSkills Competition,” said Howcroft, “Ontario youth are demonstrating the value and importance of a skilled trades education here and abroad. With the demand for skilled trades workers in Ontario growing, the opportunities from pursuing a career in the skilled trades and technologies are endless!”

The Schulich Foundation was also on site to announce a new scholarship involving the skilled trades. In its first year, The Schulich Builders: Scholarships for Skilled Trades will invest more than $3 million dollars to combat labour shortages and highlight the importance of skilled trades in Canada.

“And it’s a great way to highlight the importance of careers in the trades with the Schulich Foundation’s announcement of a substantial commitment to scholarships towards skilled trades education,” added Howcroft. “We are pleased to partner with the Schulich Foundation and the respective colleges to promote these new scholarships that will help more Ontarians pursue rewarding careers in the skilled trades.”




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