DIT Hosts National Skills Competition 2008

Over 100 apprentices from across Ireland gathered in Dublin Institute of Technology last week for the Finals of the Department of Education and Science's National Skills Competition 2008.

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Pictured are Mark Smith (Winner Joinery), Co Kildare, Gabriel Hoyle (Winner Plumbing), Dublin 8, Lynsey White (Finalist Restaurant Service), Sandyford, Dublin 18 and Carla Louise Boothman (Winner Restaurant Service), Co Kildare.

The National Skills Competition has been running since 1956 and DIT Bolton Street was the venue for the final competitions in fifteen skills areas including: Aircraft Mechanics, Automobile Technology, Autobody Repair, Brickwork, Car Painting, Cookery, Heavy Vehicle Mechanics, Joinery, Painting and Decorating, Plumbing, Polymechanics, Refrigeration, Restaurant Service, Sheet Metalwork and Welding.

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Pictured are Gabriel Hoyle (Winner Plumbing), Dublin 8 and Colin Kelly (Winner Cabinet Making), Co Kildare with Daniel Smith, Snickers Workwear.

Speaking at the announcement of the winners at a ceremony in the Mansion House Mr. Donal Keys, Chair of DIT?s National Skills Competition Organising Committee said, 'DIT is very proud to have facilitated these highly skilled young people who represent the best in Irish industry. Over four days of competition they have done themselves and their employers proud and we wish them all every success in their future careers', Mr. Keys said.

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Mr. Donal Keys, Chairman of DIT National Skills Committee, at the Awards Ceremony in the Mansion House

The winners in each skill area will receive the prestigious Silver Medal Award  from the Minister of Education and Science, at a special function  which to be held later in the year, and may also have the opportunity to represent Ireland in the World Skills Competition in Canada in 2009.

This year's event was sponsored for the first time by commercial and residential developers the Ballymore Group. Snickers Workwear once again provided professional work attire for all the competitors.

According to Donal Keys, "These competitions cannot take place without considerable sponsorship from Irish industry and we are delighted to host this year?s competition in association with Ballymore Group for the first time. Our professional work wear sponsor is Snickers Workwear who will supply the competitors with attire for the full week of the competition".

"Ballymore is delighted to be the main sponsor of the DIT National Skills Competition. Our founder, Sean Mulryan  started out in life live as an apprentice following on an AnCO  course in  bricklaying and stone work. Today, Sean's company is one of the biggest property development companies in Europe. Ballymore knows and promotes the importance of training and learning skills and we wish all the competitors well, not just in this competition but in their careers", said Paul Keogh of Ballymore.

Mr David Macken, Managing Director of Snickers Workwear, said "Snickers Workwear is very happy to be involved again with this year's National Skills Competition.

The high level of skill, commitment and determination shown by all the competitors is something Snickers is proud to promote and encourage. I would like to congratulate all the competitors and wish them all the best of luck in their future careers."

List of winners

Aircraft Mechanics   
Darragh Flannery (Redcross, Co. Wicklow)

Automobile Mechanics    
Colm Corcoran (Nenagh, Co Tipperary)

Autobody Repair    
Sean McDonald (Ballickmoyler, Co. Carlow)

Brickwork   
James Ivers ( Swords, Co Dublin)

Car Painting    
Damien Keegan (Rochfortbridge, Co. Westmeath)

Heavy Vehicle Mechanics    
Darren Courtney (Inniskeen, Co. Monaghan)

Joinery    
Mark Smith (Knocklyon, Dublin)

Painting & Decorating    
Shane Crowley (Skibbereen, Co Cork)

Polymechanics    
Dermot Cregan (Gorey, Co Wexford)

Plumbing   
Gabriel Hoyle (Dublin 8)

Refrigeration    
Ian Walsh (Cabra, Dublin)

Sheetmetal Work   
Eamon Maloney (Broadway, Co Wexford)

Welding    
James Walsh (Ballymacoda, Co. Cork)

Cookery   
Matthew Matthews (Ardee, Co. Louth)

Restaurant Service    
Carla Louise Boothman (Newbridge, Co Kildare)

Cabinet Making   
Colin Kelly (Naas, Co. Kildare)

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