Two former TAFE SA students will compete at the 2015 WorldSkills Competition, dubbed the Olympics for tradies, in Brazil this August, showcasing their cabinetmaking and tiling skills on the international stage.
Kingston South-East cabinet maker Karl Geue and West Beach wall and floor tiler Daniel Picariello have been selected in Australia’s 25-person Skillaroos team after two years of intensive training and regional competitions.
Last month the pair, who studied at TAFE SA’s Mt Gambier and Tonsley campuses respectively, took home silver medals in their respective categories at the WorldSkills Oceania Competition in Hamilton, New Zealand.
The Australian team comprises tradespeople in fields such as bricklaying, floristry, graphic design technology, hairdressing, joinery, restaurant service and welding.
Mr Geue, 20, is in the final year of his apprenticeship and works at Kingston Kabinets in the state’s South East and looks forward to taking part in the 2015 WorldSkills Competition.
“I’m pretty excited as it’s not often you get to represent your country. Hopefully all the hard work in training pays off,” Mr Geue said.
Mr Picariello, who works at Sabcal Tiling, echoed his team-mates sentiments.
“It’s very exciting to be doing something I love and am passionate about. It’s also great to be given the opportunity to see the world,” the 21-year-old said.
TAFE SA Building and Construction Director Alison Roberts said Mr Geue and Mr Picariello’s selection in the team is testament to their determination to succeed and the top-quality vocational support they have received.
“We pride ourselves on delivering training which is at the cutting edge so that the sky really is the limit for our students,” Ms Roberts said.
“We’re thrilled to see Mr Geue and Mr Picariello travel to Brazil for this important event and wish them all the best.”
WorldSkills Australia Chief Executive Officer Mark Callaghan said those named in the 2015 Skillaroos team should be incredibly proud.
“Each member of the 2015 Skillaroos will not only represent their country, they will also represent their respective industries and collectively, will showcase the high quality of vocational education and training that exists in Australia,” Mr Callaghan said.
Skillaroos team members are aged between 18 and 25 and progressed to the international ranks after winning medals at the regional level and national level.
More than 1000 competitors from 59 countries will compete in 50 skill categories for gold, silver and bronze medals at this year’s six-day WorldSkills Competition, which starts on August 11 at the Anhembi Exhibition Centre in Sao Paulo.
The event will unfold over a competition space of 213,000sq m – the equivalent of 17 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
At the WorldSkills Oceania Competition, the Australian team won 10 gold medals, 10 silver and six bronze, beating competitors from places such as Korea, Malaysia, China, India and Canada.
WorldSkills Australia is a national, not-for-profit organisation that provides young Australians with the opportunity to learn new skills, compete against their peers in their chosen trade and fast-track their career development.
The Skillaroos will continue their training over coming months before attending a farewell function on August 4 at TAFE NSW’s Ultimo College.
Applications for Semester 2 are now open. Find out more information about TAFE SA Building and Construction courses or call 1800 882 661.