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West Herts College welcome WorldSkills competitors ahead of national challenge

Sean Owens, Expert of Culinary Arts at WorldSkills UK, visited West Herts College with four qualifiers ahead of the national competition in Australia.

WorldSkills is ‘the Olympics’ of dynamic skills including culinary arts, make-up artistry, aircraft maintenance and web design.

Practising in the on-site training kitchen at our Watford campus, Sean explains: “Coming to West Herts sets up a realistic competition environment for the competitors.

“These teenagers have taken part in regional qualifiers to get through to the next step. We have two from Northern Ireland, one from Leicester and another from Yorkshire.

“My job is to take them across the UK, help them perfect their already fantastic skills and get them used to performing in different environments, kitchens and while traveling regularly.”

West Herts Food Academy students have been getting an insight into what competition cooking is like, by speaking to Sean and the potential finalists, students have found out how to get involved in the WorldSkills competition and kick-start their own culinary careers.

Sean added: “Students have been getting involved and asking questions about how to compete, it’s wonderful to see competition ethos here.

“Within the competition, competitors are tested and scrutinised on a microscopic level, there’s even a knife skill test which is measured to 0.3mm.

“The same standards are embedded in the West Herts curriculum and we’d like to get some students involved in the next national qualifier.”

Andrew Wakeford, head of Food Academy at West Herts College said: “It was excellent for us to host the WorldSkills team with Sean Owens and Will Torrent for a two-day training session.

“This is the second time we have hosted and it is always inspirational to see the work of the budding stars of the future.  Hopefully we can get one of our students to participate to this level soon!”

Click here to find out more about studying on our Food Academy courses.