The intent of the competition is to bring together a number of the best high school, post-secondary students, apprentices and other training program young people, to showcase each person’s skills and knowledge in skilled trades and technologies in our province. There are two competition categories – secondary (high school students) and post-secondary (Saskatchewan Polytechnic students, apprentices and other training facility students).
The competition provides a venue for youth in our province to compete against other Saskatchewan youth at a skilled trade or technology that they have been working on during the year.
The reason for showcasing each category of competitor is to promote each individual as a possible employee for companies and industries in Saskatchewan and to encourage them to complete their course work or apprenticeship. For high school students the showcasing is to encourage each person to possibly choose their area of skilled trades and technologies training for a future career. This is Saskatchewan’s future workforce!
The Executive Director through the Skills Saskatchewan office makes the decision annually which competition areas they will host competitions in. There are 44 competition areas hosted by the Skills Canada National Organization which each province or territory can choose from. Of these 34 are post-secondary competitions and 29 are secondary competitions. In Saskatchewan we usually host 30 secondary and 28 post-secondary competitions each year.
Once the decision is made on the competitions to be hosted the Executive Director develops a Provincial Technical committee (PTC) to run and organize each competition area. The committee has a Provincial Technical chair and working members. The duties of the PTC are outlined in the Skills Canada Saskatchewan provincial technical manual. The primary duties are to set up and run each competition. They are involved in fundraising for their competition, finding equipment and tools, supplies for the projects and skill presentation, recruit judges and volunteers and any prizes they wish to give away to their winners or all of their competitors.
The technical committee also sets the competition rules, the projects to be designed and completed and the judging criteria.
The competitions are held over one day. They usually run for 5- 7 hours depending upon what the PTC decides is enough time to complete the project assigned for the competition. Some of the competitions have a written component.
Projects are judged using criteria explained in the contest description or at the morning meeting before competition starts. Judges from industry are usually available to judge the completed projects.