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A former Pembrokeshire College joinery student has found himself competing all over the world after securing a place as part of the WorldSkills Squad UK.

Former Ysgol y Greenhill pupil, Christopher Caine has been competing almost non-stop after being selected as part of the WorldSkills UK Short Squad. From China to Australia and back again, Chris has been on the adventure of a lifetime.

Chris started at the College in September 2014 on the Level 2 in Carpentry and Joinery before progressing to an apprenticeship with Keating Joinery the following year. Chris’ competition journey began in June 2016 when he was selected to represent the College at SkillBuild 2016 – the UK’s largest construction competition. Chris picked up first place in the Joinery Senior competition leading to a place at WorldSkills UK in Birmingham where he competed against the most promising young talent from across the UK.

Chris’ performance at WorldSkills UK led to him securing a place on the WorldSkills UK Long Squad and then, in November 2017 he was announced as one of only a handful of young hopefuls to make it through to the Short Squad.

Since being part of the Short Squad, Chris’ first major competition was at EuroSkills in Budapest in September 2018 where he was awarded a Medallion of Excellence meaning he met the highest standards recognised internationally.

Since then Chris has competed at Global Skills Challenge in Melbourne, Australia where he was placed fourth and he has recently returned from China where he secured the bronze medal in the Belt and Road Skills competition.

Chris is now preparing for a training event in China before the WorldSkills Finals in Kazan, Russia this August. Classed as the Skills Olympics, this global competition will see Chris competing against the best of the best from across the world.

Now employed by DH Joinery in Pembroke Dock, Chris has been training hard in-between competitions and commented: “Each international competition has taught me something different. I have had to problem solve very quickly and efficiently in order to complete the projects to the timescale. These pressure tests will prove invaluable in helping me to prepare for the world final in Russia later this year.”

Chris joins former Pembrokeshire College professional catering student, Sam Everton, who is also part of the WorldSkills UK team.

Pembrokeshire College Principal, Dr Barry Walters commented: “To have two former Pembrokeshire College students competing in the WorldSkills Finals in Russia this year is a breath-taking achievement. We are one of the smaller colleges in the UK, so to have students competing in a global competition sends a strong message that if you are willing to learn, and to put the effort in, there really is no limit on how far you can go. We wish both Chris and Sam every success in their respective competitions and look forward to following their progress.”