The WorldSkills Competition, hailed as the “Skills Olympics”, will be hosted as Special Edition this year. 30 skilled talents, on behalf of Hong Kong, will travel to various countries including Germany, Switzerland, Finland and Korea respectively to compete with young peers worldwide in 26 skills competitions. The Hong Kong delegations vowed to give their best during the Flag Presentation Ceremony last Friday (16 September). Officiating at the ceremony, the Secretary for Education Dr CHOI Yuk-lin presented the flag to the Hong Kong competitors and wished them great achievements in the competition.
Dr CHOI remarked that Vocational and Professional Education and Training (VPET) has long been the integral part of Hong Kong education system offering quality and diversified study pathways with multiple entry and exit points for young people with different strengths and pursuits. One of the important tasks of the Current‑term Government is to further support and promote the development of VPET.
Dr Choi said, “In the future, we are committed to realising the VPET study pathway with measures like, at secondary school level, we will enhance the life planning and applied learning in order to allow students and parents to understand the study options and opportunities offered by VPET at an early stage. At the higher education stage, we have piloted applied degree scheme and conducted a review on sub-degree sector to strengthen the status of VPET in the higher education sector, so as to foster parallel development of VPET and academic education.
“VPET not only enables the youth to attain skills and knowledge required by the society and workplace, but also lays a solid foundation for them to pursue further study, career development and lifelong learning, grooming them into professional talents sought after by the industry to support the sustainable growth of Hong Kong, making contribution to the Greater Bay Area and our country.”
She also noted that the WorldSkills Competition provided an excellent platform for young people over the world to compare notes and exchange their professional skills. She felt encouraging to see Team Hong Kong overcome the challenges posed by the global pandemic and showcase their talents and results of hard-work on the international arena. She wished the competitors the best of luck and achieving their best in the WorldSkills Competition.
Dr Clement CHEN, Chairman of the Standing Committee on Youth Skills Competition noted in his welcome address that this year is the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) as well as the 25th year Team Hong Kong joins the WorldSkills Competition, which has a special meaning for Hong Kong. The HKSAR Government has all along been committed to promoting Vocational and Professional Education and Training (VPET), while the Standing Committee on Youth Skills Competition has encouraged the youth to take part in the skills competition and explore their strengths and skills through VPET according to their own ability and interests. Dr CHEN hoped that the young competitors would not only represent Hong Kong to participate in the WorldSkills Competition, but also continue to thrive in various fields and further contribute to the industry and society.
The biennial WorldSkills Competition is the world’s largest skills competition which aims at raising awareness of VPET and skills training in the international community. Into its 46th competition, a Special Edition is held due to the pandemic. Over 1,000 young skilled talents from nearly 60 countries and regions were invited to compete in over 60 skills competitions in 15 different countries and regions around the world between September and November. 30 Hong Kong competitors will travel to 10 different countries with experts in batches to take part in 26 skills competition and win glory for Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong competitors are seizing the time before departure to go through intensive training with their experts, including the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (IVE) graduate of Higher Diploma in Software Engineering programme, WONG Ka-shing, who will participate in the “IT Software Solutions for Business” competition. His elder brother WONG Ka-wai participated in the same competition trade in WorldSkills London 2011. Inspired by brother’s intensive training and high level of concentration for the competition in the past, Ka-shing was determined to follow his footsteps into studying at IVE and the IT profession. With the programming skills his brother passed on to him, Ka-shing successfully secured his place in representing Hong Kong to join the international skills competition this year. The “IT Software Solutions for Business” competition requires competitors to develop a software solution for business’ operation and management using designated software development tools. Ka-shing is grasping every minute before travelling to Korea for the competition to further sharpen his mobile application development and programming skills, wishing that he performs his best during the competition. His brother Ka-wai said with a smile, “WorldSkills Competition is one of my life-changing events, for it has broadened my horizon and motivated me to continually strive to upgrade myself. I wish the same for my little brother. I hope to see him outdo himself at the competition and that we can shine together in the IT industry in the future.” With his experience at the skills competition, Ka-wai is now applying his skills and knowledge to his work in the IT industry in the UK.
MUNG Fuk-hoi, the female representative for the “Pâtisserie and Confectionery” competition is also busy preparing for the competition. Fuk-hoi is the graduate of the Higher Diploma in Baking and Pastry Arts programme from International Culinary Institute (ICI). She has always been interested in bakery and pastry since she was a secondary student. Baking cookies and cakes for her family at leisure became her habit. After finishing the HKDSE, she chose to study at the ICI. During her study there, she won numerous awards in various competitions, including one Gold and one Silver medals from the Pastry category of Hong Kong International Culinary Classic 2021 at HOFEX, the Hong Kong Regional First Prize in the Pâtisserie and Confectionery trade of the 11th Guangzhou/Hong Kong/Macao/Chengdu (GHMC) Youth Skills Competition, and so forth. The Pâtisserie and Confectionery trade of the WorldSkills Competition requires competitors to produce a full range of hot and cold desserts, cakes, and themed display pieces using sugar, chocolate, marzipan, and other ingredients skillfully for service in luxury/boutique hotels. Fuk-hoi has grasped excellent creating skills in chocolate cake and display pieces and has her sugar-pulling skills well-trained along her path to becoming a professional pastry chef. She hopes to attain, as previously, remarkable result in the competition in Switzerland next month.
Competitors of Team Hong Kong are winners of the WorldSkills Hong Kong Competition jointly organised by the Vocational Training Council (VTC), the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and the Clothing Industry Training Authority (CITA), and representatives selected by various assessments after participating in a range of training programmes. Since first joining in 1997, Team Hong Kong has won two Golds, one Silver, five Bronze and 59 Medallions for Excellence, testimony to the world-recognised skill level of Hong Kong competitors.
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Annex 1: WorldSkills Competition 2022 Special Edition
Competition Trades Participated by Team Hong Kong
|Refrigeration and Air Conditioning|
|Plumbing and Heating|
|Graphic Design Technology|
|Pâtisserie and Confectionery|
|3D Digital Game Art|
|IT Software Solutions for Business|
|Mobile Applications Development|
|Information Network Cabling|
|Painting and Decorating|
|Wall and Floor Tiling|
|Concrete Construction Work|