SkillFRIDGE - Bright sparks prepare to compete in regional heats

SkillFRIDGE - Bright sparks prepare to compete in regional heats

In the months since January, colleges from across the UK have been identifying their most outstanding RACHP students and have put them in the running to compete in the SkillFRIDGE 2018 competition series.

Registered apprentices will now compete in one of several regional heats taking place across the UK, and will be challenged to demonstrate their skills and knowledge in a series of tasks that have been reviewed and endorsed by the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) to ensure that they demonstrate the high level of standards expected within the industry.

The regional heats will take place as follows:

Tuesday 12 June Bath College

Thursday 14 June Eastleigh College

Thursday 12 July Practical Refrigeration Centre

Wednesday 18 July Grimsby Institute

Bath College, who will host the first regional heat, is the largest provider of apprenticeships in Bath, helping students find a suitable course and ensure they have the knowledge and skills required for their chosen career.

Simon Robinson, Refrigeration & Electrical learning coordinator, comments on the college's involvement with the competition: "The whole SkillFRIDGE competition sets a high level of standard that the industry wants to be recognised for and Bath College are keen to support this ethos."

"The apprentices here feel it is an honour to get into the regional heats and realise they have been selected because they are showing signs of being potentially the best future engineers for the industry."

Eastleigh College has worked alongside SkillFRIDGE for several years, demonstrating its commitment to working in partnership with a wide range of organisations, groups and other providers. The college offers a wide range of vocational courses to over 22,000 learners, with specialist provisions for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning.

Shaun Creech says: "We have noticed that the students - year on year - get more competitive with each other to see who the best within the college is. When they get through to the regional and national finals, you see them step up again."

"You really see them improve, and become more confident and competent.”

What happens next?

Following the regional heats, the highest scoring competitor be invited to receive a prestigious accolade at the BESA Awards in October 2018.

The top seven scoring competitors will go on to compete at the SkillFRIDGE final taking place at WorldSkills LIVE in November. The highest scoring competitor at this stage will be crowed SkillFRIDGE Champion and will receive their award, along with their college receiving the SkillFRIDGE shield, at the ACR News Awards in March 2019.

A partnership between business and apprentices

Climalife is the latest industry name to pledge its support to SkillFRIDGE, serving as a brand sponsor to the competition. Allan Harper, managing director, comments: "Climalife is very pleased to be supporting SkillFRIDGE. We see huge importance in giving our next generation of engineers the support and training they need to develop skills in the RACHP industry, and are excited to be a part of that process."

Climalife joins lead sponsor Toshiba Carrier UK, brand partners Dean & Wood and BESA, brand sponsors A-Gas, Advanced Engineering, Fieldpiece, Lawton Tubes, Safeflame, Vulkan Lokring, training providers Business Edge and Coriolis, and association sponsors FETA, IOR, REFCOM and IOM3.

To find out how your brand can get involved, contact Karena Cooper on 01622 699150 or at


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