Middlesex students prepare for NEC skills showdown

Six Middlesex University London students are preparing to compete in WorldSkills UK, a national competition which pits them against some of the most talented young people across the country. 

The three day competition is taking place from 17 to 19 November at the Skills Show, NEC Birmingham, the UK’s largest vocational skills and careers event and sees the students split into three Middlesex teams, two in the Robotics and one in the Mechatronics Higher categories.

Andrej Lieskovsky and Piotr Nowicki (Mechatronics Higher) will compete for Middlesex along with Eva Blessing Onyuelo, Rahul Vekaria, Chibuike Okpaluba and Raj Manandhar (Robotics).

Chibuike Okpaluba said: “We are excited to take part in this competition. We decided to participate so that we could practice all that we've learned in our first year. We have successfully entered the finals, and are expecting to have fun there.  

“Personally, I think this competition is interesting because the tasks are designed to test every bit of engineering and the problem-solving skills students should have when participating in any engineering project. 

Students rarely have this opportunity, so I think this helps improve my future engineering prospects.”Image removed.

These competitions play a vital role in raising skills standards among young people and provide an opportunity for competitors to challenge themselves against the best in the country.

The students will be hoping to recreate the success of previous competitors from the university who went on to successfully represent the UK in the European and then global skills competitions. 

Middlesex University London’s Professor Mehmet Karamanoglu said: “Middlesex students have a long established record of doing well at these competitions. This year, we have another team in the Mechatronics Higher event, going against 6 other teams from industry.

“There are also two further teams competing in Robotics which promises to be another nail biting event. We are really proud to see our students have a go at such events to  test their high level skills against some of the best in industry and we wish them all the best.”

These competitors will be accompanied by fellow students covering all areas of the University’s Faculty of Science and Technology who are running a ‘Have a go’ area where visitors can get a hands-on-experience of new skills.