Students show off their tech skills

Two Blackburn College students are hoping to compete in the UK finals of the World Skills computing competition after impressing judges in the regional heats.

Abdul Basit and Bailey Goulding are now waiting to hear whether they have secured a place in the coveted computing competition.

The north west competition, hosted at Blackburn College, saw students from three north west colleges and one Welsh college go head to head in three categories – Microsoft Advanced Technician, Network Administrator and Web Design Advanced.

The winners across the regional heats are chosen to compete in the UK finals in November at the NEC Birmingham.

The winners of the UK finals will be offered a chance to compete in the World Skills competition in Abu Dhabi in 2017.

Blackburn College student Abdul Basit, who last year won the regional North West Heat for Microsoft Technician but narrowly missed out on a place in the world skills competition, came first in this year’s Network Administrator heat.

College lecturer Julie Johnson said: “This is a demanding competition that is perfect for apprentices working in the technical industries. After competing in the North West heat Abdul was snapped up for an apprenticeship by a large local company.

Fellow Blackburn College student Bailey Goulding entered the competition for the first time this year. He competed in the Web Design Advanced competition which involves mastering HTML code, Java script and flash coding.  He was awarded a first place at the heats.

Both of the winning candidates now have to wait until all nine of the regional heats are completed to find out their fate.

Henry Yates, a level 3 year one student, also competed in the Microsoft technician competition. Henry, who received a 3rd place overall, hopes to build on his achievement and compete again next year.

Peter Ford, Head of Studies for Digital and iBusiness at Blackburn College, said: “Blackburn College was pleased to host this event and colleagues at the college worked hard to ensure that it was a success.

“The standard of the competition was high and students deserve to be congratulated for ensuring that the standards of previous years were maintained and in many cases exceeded.

“I would like to thank the staff and students who attended for making the day so successful.  The competition highlights the talents of students at this, and other colleges, in Lancashire, who have a bright future in Information Technology should they choose to pursue a career in the field.”

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