An 18-year-old from Danescourt has won a gold medal in the nail services final of a national skills competition.
Backed by the Welsh Government through the European Social Fund, Skills Competition Wales is a series of events held in colleges across the country, designed to celebrate vocational skills and create highly skilled, award winning employees for the Welsh workforce.
Charlotte O’Shea, who is studying a level 3 NVQ in nail services, competed against seven other students from across Wales in a series of manicure challenges within a three hour time period. The competitors were tasked with applying a full set of acrylic nails and demonstrating French-style, solid colour and nail art designs.
Charlotte, currently studying at Coleg y Cymoedd, said she couldn’t believe it when the judges announced her as the winner.
“The competition was quite nerve-wracking, even though I’m used to doing different styles of manicures it’s normally when I’m chatting to a classmate at college or one of my friends. The competition was so quiet with everyone concentrating it felt quite intense.
“My dream is to open my own nail salon one day, but I think I’m still a few years away from being able to set up my own business. I’ve always loved painting nails and I’m really looking forward to researching and practicing new nail art designs for the next stage of the competitions where I know I’ll need to up my game to compete against some of the best nail artists from across the UK.”
More than 35 competitions are taking place this year, across a wide range of different vocations from plumbing and beauty therapy to aeronautical engineering and accountancy.
The successful Welsh competitors may go on to challenge youngsters from across the UK at the WorldSkills UK national finals, held at The Skills Show in Birmingham’s NEC this November. Competitors who excel at The Skills Show may then be shortlisted to compete against the world’s most talented young people at the international WorldSkills competition in Kazan, Russia in 2019.
Minister for Skills and Science, Julie James said: “At the Skills Show last year, the Welsh team topped the leader board of UK regions winning a total of 45 medals, which demonstrates that we’re producing some of the most highly skilled young people across the nation.
“In a year when Wales is celebrating legends of the past, competitions like these showcase the talent across the country and provide a platform for emerging Welsh legends of the future.
“Along with Charlotte’s hard work and determination the support from her college is an important factor in her success, and I would like to extend a special thank you to all the local businesses, schools and colleges across Wales who support these talented individuals.
“I would like to congratulate Charlotte on her fantastic achievement and wish her the best of luck in the next stage of the competition and her future career.”