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Top accolade for engineering student

12th September 2017

A SOUTH Eastern Regional College (SERC) apprentice has been crowned the UK’s best Heavy Vehicle Engineer.

Michael Kelly from Ballynahinch travelled to Stephenson College to compete at the National Qualifiers of the IMI Skills Auto Competition which took place from July 5-7.

The competition, organised by the Institute of the Motor Industry, aims to find the top new talent within the industry in Automotive Body Repair, Vehicle Refinishing, Automotive Technology and Heavy Vehicle Engineering. Michael was nominated by his tutor Ian McClure to take an online knowledge test. The top 30 high scorers were invited to compete at Stephenson College’s VOLVO Academy to demonstrate their practical skills and abilities.

The top competitors from across the national qualifiers will now progress to the live final held at the Skills Show at their practical and theoretical knowledge over two days to find the IMI Skill Auto Bronze, Silver and Gold medalists.

Commenting on Michael’s achievement lecturer James McClure said: “Michael has worked hard throughout his time at SERC and he is now being rewarded for that hard work having developed into a highly competent mechanic.

He fully deserves this accolade and he has a bright future ahead of him in this industry.”

Michael was assessed on a range of tasks, designed to reflect his knowledge and was up against some of the top apprentices from across the nation.

From an initial entry of over 300, 84 individuals took part in the practical heats with only 24 – 6 from each skill area – being invited to the national finals and the possibility of becoming UK champion.

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