MELBOURNE, Australia — Ford Geelong electrical apprentices, Lucas Diaz and Nicholas Skinner entered the Regional WorldSkills Mechatronics competition at the local Gordon TAFE in November. Lucas was the overall winner of the competition which will enable him to compete at the National level in Perth, in late 2014. Nicholas also performed well but is unable to go further in the competition due to age limitations. WorldSkills is a long running, prestigious competition which showcases trainees, apprentices and students in over 50 different skill and trade areas.
Commencing at the regional level, winners progress onto the 3-day National level and then onto the world stage at the 43rd WorldSkills International competition to be held in Brazil in 2015.
The mechatronics competition involves working with electro pneumatic (PLC) circuitry from design to installation and fault finding stages. Mechatronics technicians design, build, maintain and repair automated equipment and programme equipment control systems. Mechatronics is concerned with mechanics, electronics and computer technology. The computer technology element covers information technology applications, programmable machine control systems and technology that enables communication between machines, equipment and people.
Lucas will team up with another electrical apprentice from Alcoa to compete in Perth in September, 2014.