Maddie Lock has won a Gold Medal in a national competition to improve training and skill levels for young people across the UK.
Maddie – now in the first year of Graphic Design BA (Hons) at the university – bagged Gold in the Visual Merchandising category at the WorldSkills UK National Finals. More than 400 young students and apprentices took part in the finals, judged at 60 competition events staged during November across the UK.
The finalists had made it through a seven-month process of regional heats and intensive training before stepping up to pit their skills against the best of the best. Medals were awarded in skills competitions including Forensic Science, Painting & Decorating and cutting-edge digital skills such as Digital Construction, Digital Media and 3D Game Design.
Maddie said: “The Visual Merchandising category is about displaying merchandise – usually garments – in a creative and engaging way. We had to show our practical, professional skills through several rounds, and then finally create a window display.
“I’ve really enjoyed my first semester so far at the University of Brighton. The course especially has been amazing. It works so well for what I’m interested in, and all the tutors are great.”
WorldSkills UK also selects and trains young people to represent the UK at international competitions. The unique insights and global best practice it gathers as part of that work are shared with young people and educators to help raise the bar of skills across the country by training the trainers and imparting invaluable tips and techniques.
Ben Blackledge, Deputy Chief Executive of WorldSkills UK said: “Maddie is a real inspiration. She and her fellow participants are an example to us all and should be celebrated. To have excelled after such a difficult year shows that their dedication and skills are truly excellent. Skills are the lifeblood of every economy, creating high quality jobs, rewarding careers, and our competitions are proof that there is amazing talent in every part of the UK.”