Home-grown talents go global

July 8, 2018

Skilled Hong Kong youths will go up against teams from around the world in next year's WorldSkills Competition, also known as the "skills Olympics", in Kazan, Russia.


They are the winners of this year's WorldSkills Hong Kong Competition, where 600 people aged below 21 competed in 25 trades divided into six categories, including Construction & Building Technology, Creative Arts & Fashion and Social & Personal Services.


The event's Car Painting Competition saw participants restore damaged vehicles within four hours.


Car painter Lucas Li said: "The task of spraying the surface coat of paint is the most difficult one as we need to prepare surfaces for painting. High quality bodywork requires good manual skills."


Concentration and perseverance

Ivan Wong, a former elite archer, was one of the competition's three winners.


The 20-year-old said archery and car painting are similar in that they require concentration, stability and perseverance.


"Spray guns are quite heavy. My hand gets exhausted after holding it for a while. But when I practise archery, the bows are much heavier than the spray guns. Maybe that's the reason why I am good at doing paint jobs."


Fond of mechanics since he was a boy, Ivan undertook a part-time automotive technology diploma course at the Vocational Training Council two years ago.


Now he works as a painting apprentice for a manufacturer of body parts for electric vehicles.


"A lot of people love playing basketball or playing soccer, but not many have the opportunity to represent their region. I treasure this opportunity to compete in an international car painting or archery competition."


New skills

As demand for new skills grows, two new trades - Cloud Computing and 3D Digital Game Art - were added to the WorldSkills Hong Kong Competition 2018.


The 3D Digital Game Art category required competitors to produce three-dimensional video game content such as characters and movements within a time limit.


Victor Kwok was one of the winners of the category this year. The 19-year-old is now studying for a Higher Diploma in games and animation at the Institute of Vocational Education.


"Different designers have different styles. Cartoons are attractive to me, that's why I create my characters and their movements in this style.


"The most difficult aspect to the competition is that all the work must be done in nine hours. It is not an easy task."


Insightful experience

The WorldSkills Hong Kong Competition, organised by the Vocational Training Council, the Construction Industry Council and the Clothing Industry Training Authority, is a chance for youngsters to advance and excel in their professional skills and contribute to society.


Youth Skills Competition Standing Committee Chairman Clement Chen said: "I think it's important because the experience they gain from the competitions they can bring back and share with their fellow classmates and students.


"Through our competition we can let secondary school students or even primary school students learn a lot more about a particular skill or profession."

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