SINGAPORE - A team of 40 Singaporean students returned on Wednesday (Sept 5) from the 12th WorldSkills Asean 2018 competition in Thailandwith a haul of nine medals and seven medallions for excellence.
Ngee Ann Polytechnic students Daphne Tan, 19, and Lim Gao Min, 20, won a silver medal in the Internet of Things team event, a new skill category in the competition this year.
The duo were tested on video surveillance, intelligent lighting and smart housing systems, where they had to configure the systems and ensure the components were powered up. They were also required to draw wiring diagrams to show how they did it.
The regional competition was held in Bangkok from Friday to Sunday , where 331 youths from the 10 countries - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam - competed across 26 skill categories.
Singapore's representatives participated in 20 categories.
A biennial event, the Asean Skills Competition aims to boost vocational training and professional skills in young people.
Said Ms Tan: "This Asean Skills Competition is an eye opening experience for me. Being able to garner a silver medal, my teammate and I are very happy since Internet of Things is being contested for the first time and all our effort has paid off.
"My teammate Gao Min and I found out each other's strengths and weaknesses. For example, she handled the cabling during the competition, as she is good at it, and I drew the wiring diagram since I could complete it faster."
Singapore finished fifth overall.
A total of 12 students bagged three gold medals in beauty therapy, graphic design technology and mechatronics (team event); three silver medals in beauty therapy, information network cabling and Internet of Things (team event); and three bronze medals in industrial automation (team event), IT network systems administration and mechanical engineering computer-aided design.
Another seven students won medallions for excellence in their respective fields.
The team of 40, which is the largest ever sent by Singapore in this competition, was made up of students from the Institute of Technical Education, Nanyang Polytechnic, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore Polytechnic, Republic Polytechnic and Temasek Polytechnic.
Thailand took top spot, with 16 gold, four silver, three bronze medals and 13 medallions for excellence.
Mr Ng Cher Pong, chairman of the WorldSkills Singapore Council and chief executive of SkillsFuture Singapore, said in a press statement: "The results reflect the high standards of skills among our Singapore youths, and we are encouraged by their strong performance at the regional stage.
"For all of them, this is the start of their skills development journey and we hope that this competition will spur them on to scale greater heights."
In the previous edition of the competition in Kuala Lumpur in 2016,Singapore placed fifth as well.
The students won three gold, one silver and seven bronze medals, as well as eight medallions for excellence.
Singapore will be hosting the next WorldSkills Asean Competition in 2020.
Ms Low Yen Ling, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Manpower, said: "Our young people... have shown us what grit is. No matter how tough the challenges were, they overcame the tests with focus, resilience and absolute determination.
"The medals won by our youths is an encouraging sign for a nation where skills are key to future successes. This win augurs well for Singapore as we look forward to hosting the WorldSkills Asean Singapore 2020 Competition."