Star Aberdeenshire apprentice Connor Cruden has been recognised with a ‘Medallion for Excellence’ after competing against finalists from 20 countries to take 7th place at the WorldSkills Plumbing Competition in Lahr, Germany.
The gifted plumber who was coached by Newry-based Ronnie Ferris was supported at the event by his farmer parents Iain and Fiona, employer Garry Cowie, Moray College lecturer Jim Mackinnon, the Scotland and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers’ Federation (SNIPEF), and friends.
Cruden qualified for the finals of the competition after winning the 2019 SkillPLUMB UK competition to find the country’s most accomplished apprentice. He says: “What a fantastic event. It stretched over three days and we were thrown straight into the thick of it with challenges including installing a bathroom and waste water pipes.
“It was nineteen and a half hours of intense competition at a really high standard and, after Day Two, I was in the lead.
“But on the final day I made a couple of stupid mistakes. I knew as soon as it happened and it cost me the points. I had trained hard and I entered the contest confidently.
“I would like to thank SNIPEF for all the help, assistance and encouragement they provide, and also for a very generous, and very unexpected, financial consideration they gave me to mark my effort.”
Cruden’s employer comments: “This is a great moment for Connor. He has taken on the world and acquitted himself honourably. Not many would have been able to show his cool professionalism. He is now an extremely talented craftsman and I am sure that he has a glittering career ahead of him.”
“We are all very proud of Connor and his achievements at the WorldSkills final in Germany”Dale Thomson, Training Manager at SNIPEF Training Services
Dale Thomson, Training Manager at SNIPEF Training Services, adds: “We are all very proud of Connor and his achievements at the WorldSkills final in Germany. Receiving a Medallion for Excellence is an outstanding feat, and Connor performed fantastically and gave it his all.
“He is an excellent ambassador for the plumbing and heating industry, and is an example to anyone considering a career in our industry.”
Supported by SNIPEF and the charity arm of the BPEC Group, the WorldSkills competition enables talented apprentices to showcase their skills and knowledge of best plumbing practice, and is designed to promote standards and skills across the global plumbing industry by celebrating excellence.
Apprentices are provided with previously unseen drawings and tasked with devising practical plumbing solutions that meet exacting technical relating to water- and air- fastness.
This year’s competition was originally scheduled to take place in Shanghai in 2021, before being relocated to Germany and held under the auspices of German fixtures manufacturer Grohe because of Covid-19 restrictions in China. Observers from the Ukraine were also invited to the event.
See the list of finals winners at https://results.worldskills.org/results.
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