Giving engineering apprentices the cutting edge at Skills Wales 2019 Jose Ucar | 2nd April 2019 In manufacturing, skills matter just as much as up to date equipment. That’s why leading cutting tool manufacturer, KYOCERA SGS, was proud to help inspire engineers of the future in the first and crucial stage of a major competition. Having benefited from using KYOCERA SGS tools in his previous job, Adam Youens, Electrical-Mechanical Engineering Tutor at North East Wales-based Coleg Cambria, recognised an opportunity to partner with the company to support three apprentices taking part in the Skills Wales CNC Milling competition. The competition is the initial and vital stage in the National Skills and EuroSkills competitions that culminate in the WorldSkills Competition in Kazan, Russia, where competitors from more than 60 countries compete in 56 skills! With the cutting equipment a vital part of the Skills Wales competition, KYOCERA SGS were happy to provide the college with two sets of their solid carbide tools. The cutting tools played an important role in the competition which prepares participants for industry by giving them real-life experience of the role of a CNC machinist. Working to a brief, the competitors use the CNC machine tools to cut, drill, shape and finish components used in the engineering and manufacturing sectors. The experience of working with the best quality tools helped to further inspire finalists Gareth Butler, Andrew Oakden and Carwyn Roberts about a future in manufacturing. Tutor Adam Youens comments: “The three finalists are Airbus Apprentices and the Skills Wales competition is another valuable way to build their confidence and experience. It’s been invaluable to have industry partners like KYOCERA SGS involved with the competition so that the students can see the type of cutting technology that’s out there, particularly as these are higher quality tools than the industry standard. We are still using the tooling now to train the students.” The partnership has proved such a great success that both the college and KYOCERA SGS are keen to develop it in the future. KYOCERA SGS plan to support the next Skills Wales event and to visit the UK Skills finals at Birmingham NEC in January. As Kurt Regan, Sales Engineer at KYOCERA SGS, says: “With manufacturing changing constantly, we were proud to be able to help prepare the engineers of the future by providing the latest cutting tools. We were pleased to be able to make the most of this opportunity to develop a strong relationship with the college and to continue to build on our links with education.” In manufacturing, nurturing the talent of the future is just as important as having access to the best quality tools. Partnerships like the one between Coleg Cambria and KYOCERA SGS are helping to make both happen.