The World Skills competition was an incredible experience for Ryan Folk, one that he expects will serve him well in his career.
Folk, who is originally from Stoughton, represented Canada in the electrical installations category at World Skills in Kazan, Russia, from Aug. 22-27.
While he didn’t medal at the global event, he still put forward an excellent showing that demonstrated his abilities while going against some of the best young people in the world in his field.
The week in Russia began with a chance to unwind, recover from the jetlag and sightsee around Kazan. World Skills planned some excursions and tours around the city.
Opening ceremonies were held Aug. 22, and then the competition ran from Aug. 23-26. Medals were handed out at the closing ceremonies Aug. 27.
In the electrical installations division, the competitors were assigned a project they had to complete. It was a general install with different electrical components with raceways, cabinets and wiring methods.
“Mixed in, most of it was automated with a home automation system, and there was also some motor control and a smart relay control,” said Folk.
He admits it’s hard to explain the project to someone who isn’t from an electrician’s background, but it was fairly intricate, which is to be expected at the world championship level.
“It was a fairly difficult project to complete in the time that they gave us,” said Folk.
The project he had to complete was more difficult than the one from Skills Canada nationals in May.
“There’s no home automation at our nationals, and just learning that is a challenge in itself. And then just with the different type of materials and all that kind of stuff that they want us to use, it’s way harder,” said Folk.
At one point, he said it was somewhat similar to the Olympics, because the best were there representing their countries.
He hasn’t received much feedback from the judges yet to let him know what he did well and where he could use improvement. There were some issues with his equipment the final day, and a couple of the experts from other countries noticed that.
For the full story about Ryan Folk's experience, check out the Sept. 11 issue of the Weyburn Review.