Lewis and Varsani hard at work.

Young engineers descend on London for 'Skills Olympics'

Two Middlesex University engineers are amongst those representing the UK this week, as they take on the world’s most highly skilled students, apprentices and employees at WorldSkills London 2011.  

The tournament is the world’s largest international skills competition for young people.  

Puja Varsani and Darren Lewis, both Product Design and Robotics students at Middlesex University, will represent the country in the Mobile Robotics category at the skills competition, taking place at London’s ExCeL centre from 5-8 October.

The event will see 1,000 young people from 52 countries compete to be crowned the best at their skills, under the watchful eye of around 150,000 spectators.    

In June 2009 and 2010 Lewis and Varsani won the gold medal in the UK Skills finals before winning bronze medals at EuroSkills held in December 2010 in Lisbon, Portugal.

The pair have undergone an intense training programme since November 2010 with each completing on average 100 days of training and assessment.  Both have recently been putting in 11 hour days as they worked hard on completing a robot which they will use in the competition this week. At the event they will need to programme it to complete a number of tasks including a postal task where the robot will have to collect and deliver items to a correct postal area on a mini London landscape.

The four days of competition will see young people compete in 45 different skills ranging from web design to engineering. Teams from countries as far afield as Argentina to Australia will descend on the ExCel London which has more than 90,000m2 of space, the size of 10 Wembley Stadium football pitches.   

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