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Belfast Met students are gold and bronze medallists at the World Skills UK finals


The College was delighted when two of its students picked up medals at the World Skills finals. Nathan Dane received a gold medal in the Industrial Electronics category and Leonie McDonagh received bronze for Carpentry. This is a really fantastic achievement as they were studying throughout the pandemic and were able to produce exceptionally high standards of work throughout the competition.

Gold medallist, Nathan Dane, said: “It’s really brilliant to receive a gold medal and I’d like to thank the Belfast Met staff who supported me. It was such a fantastic experience taking part in the competition and especially being able to travel and meet new like-minded people. It was an unforgettable experience and I really enjoyed talking to other competitors who share my passion for electronics.”

Nathan completed the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Electrical/Electronic Engineering and is currently working for Exitech Digital based in Ballygawley. His co competitor Shane Dalzell also received Highly Commended in the Electronics category.”

Lecturer in Electronics, Patrick Roberts, confirmed: “Nathan has completed some really amazing work and remained very focussed throughout the competition. His achievement is all the more exceptional as his course had to be taught online due to the pandemic and he was up against some stiff competition. Having observed his work, it was of the highest standard I have ever seen in this competition. I would like to congratulate Nathan and Shane and have no doubt that they will go far in their chosen careers.”

Bronze medallist, Leonie McDonagh, was delighted at receiving bronze, has just completed Level 3 Carpentry and Joinery with distinction and has started studying a Foundation degree in Architectural Technology at the College. Our other finalist Matthew Connor (Carpentry) produced a very high standard of work and narrowly missed out on a medal.

Leonie, added: ““This bronze medal is very much testament to the brilliant teaching and wonderful support I have received from Belfast Met. The staff couldn’t have done more to help us on this competition journey. I am very grateful for all they have done and feel very proud to have secured a bronze amongst such excellent competitors.”

Kieron Flannery, Lecturer in Carpentry at Belfast Met, said: “I am absolutely delighted for Leonie this award is very much deserved for all the hard work put in before and during the competition. Both Leonie and Matthew went the extra mile, spending many hours of practice extending long into the dark evenings in the workshop.

“They both underwent intensive training before stepping up to pit their skills against the best of the best, combining both geometry skills, complex drawings and the practical skills required in this highly skilled discipline. They have done the team in Carpentry and Joinery as well as the college proud.”

The two finalists who very narrowly missed out on medals were Shane Dalzell who has completed the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Electrical/Electronic Engineering and is currently studying in Bath for a degree in Electrical & Electronic engineering.

Matthew Connor is now in his second year of studying his Level 2 Carpentry and Joinery course so was just in first year when he made it to the finals which is an outstanding achievement.

Chris Corken, Head of Science, Engineering and Construction, confirmed: “This is a fantastic result for Leonie, to compete and be awarded a medal at this level demonstrates a passion and commitment to learning new skills, a testament to Leonie’s enthusiasm and determination. On behalf of the Senior Leadership Team at the college I would like to congratulate Leonie and to thank Kieron Flannery, Peter Davidson and all the carpentry and joinery team for their professionalism and support. We look forward to supporting Leonie on the next exciting phase of the journey.”

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