Aberdare teenager Alexander wins Wales-wide mechanical engineering competition
Alexander Dighton, a student at Coleg y Cymoedd, was asked to draw a computer aided design of a wobbler engine.
A Cynon Valley teenager has won a Wales-wide competition in advanced mechanical engineering.
Alexander Dighton, 18, from Aberdare, has won the Mechanical Engineering Computer Aided Design (CAD) Skills Competition Wales final, beating 14 engineering students in the Welsh Government-backed event.
The Coleg y Cymoedd student, studying a Level 2 Parametric Modelling City and Guild qualification, was asked to draw a CAD of a wobbler engine, made up of more than 50 different parts in a four-hour time period.
The judges were looking for design skills and also checked if the final model was assembled in a realistic way, so it would run in real life.
Alexander said: “I found assembling all of the tiny details on the CAD drawing the most difficult part of the competition.
“As well as studying full time engineering at Neath Port Talbot College, I’m also working towards a part time Level 2 Parametric Modelling City and Guild qualification at Coleg y Cymoedd, so finding the time to practise was also extremely challenging.
“I didn’t expect to win at all. I came second in the robotics category last year and I competed at the skills show but I didn’t place, so it shows that my skills are developing. I‘m proud to hopefully go forward and represent Wales.”
Alexander, who will one day like to be an engineer in the Royal Air Force, will now go forward to compete in the World Skills UK Mechanical Engineering CAD competition, with the aim of representing Wales at November’s skills show in Birmingham.
Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology Julie James AM added: “Having a highly-skilled workforce is essential for the future of our country. It’s important to highlight the value of practical vocational skills that can be applied to our thriving industries in Wales.”
“It takes hard work, sheer determination and a lot of skill to compete against Wales’ most talented apprentices and learners, so their achievements should be commended and celebrated.
“We wish Alexander and all the other finalists and winners the very best of luck, not only in the next round of the competitions, but also in the careers they go on to pursue.”
On 16th April, Coleg y Cymoedd will host an Advice Day. The Advice Day will run from 4pm to 7pm and will provide an opportunity for prospective learners and their families to explore the college’s facilities and learn more about available courses.