September 8, 2021

AGA SBAT to take on the nation at WorldSkills championships

Aspiring electrician Lucas Gallardo is blazing a trail at AGA Deer Park. The 18-year-old electrotechnology SBAT has been selected for Team Victoria to compete against the nation’s best apprentices and VET students at the WorldSkills Australia National Championships next month*. If he wins, he’ll compete at the international WorldSkills event — so there’s a lot resting on his young shoulders.

WorldSkills is a global event held every two years to showcase vocational education and skills excellence across a range of specialisations. Australia is among 85 countries and regions represented at the event.

Competing at WorldSkills is highly regarded in the industry and has the potential to be a game-changer for Lucas. The commitment he has shown in the lead up to the event — like practicing during his school holidays and following a rigid training plan — have helped accelerate his skills development and cement his understanding of how the industry works.

Lucas is in year 12 at Wyndham Central College in Melbourne’s west and works one day a week doing commercial electrical work at Rydec as part of his school-based apprenticeship. He is clearly not afraid of hard work — but speaking to Lucas, you get the feeling the key to his success is that he is living his dream.

“In year 7 we made a lot of DC circuits and ever since then I fell in love with the trade. I really like knowing how lights and circuits and switches and stuff like that work. Now that I work with A-grades (qualified electricians), I get to read plans which are like a birds’ eye view of a building, and then I evaluate where the lights and cabling need to be run in the tiles, down through pillars and ceilings. I like it a lot.”

Lucas’s Field Officer Andrew Micallef was instrumental in putting him forward for the WorldSkills competition and believes he will be a strong contender. “Lucas has a really good work ethic. He is just about to start his second-year (electrotechnology) subjects in his first year, so he is racing ahead. We’re all really proud of him.”

GTO Field Officer Rob Paladino has been involved in Lucas’s WorldSkills journey from the get-go and says his mind-set is what sets him apart. “Lucas is always positive and optimistic and even with all the COVID delays to the championships, he has kept up his motivation. Because of COVID there’ll be no spectators at WorldSkills but there’ll be plenty of us cheering him on via the live-stream,” said Rob.

Whatever the outcome at WorldSkills, Lucas’s career prospects will be the big winner.

About WorldSkills Australia

WorldSkills Australia aims to celebrate vocational education and training and show that learning a skill and choosing a skills-based career is one of the most important decisions a young person and their family can make. WorldSkills Australia is supported by the Australian Department of Education & Training, state governments and partners from industry and related associations.

* The WorldSkills Australia National Championships were due to be held in August 2021 but were delayed in some states due to COVID-19. The anticipated competition date for Victorian competitors is 21-22 October 2021.

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